Peace Corps is a federal US organization set up in 1961. According to popular legend, the idea first originated when John F. Kennedy was giving a late night speech to a group of college graduates. The US President said to the young people, "Could you devote up to two years of your life to really doing something important in another country? Could you sacrifice your own plans, go to a strange place and help people solve their problems?" A surprising amount of young college graduates responded to the challenge, and Peace Corps came into being.
Today there are offices all over the USA. Peace Corps trains and sends volunteers abroad to work with people of developing countries on projects for technological, agricultural, and educational improvement. For example, in Africa there is a great demand for specialists in agriculture, sanitation and health awareness. In Russia, specialists in the English language are needed, as well as a small amount of business advisers, joint enterprise managers, entrepreneurs.
Peace Corps volunteers do not go to any place of their own accord. The country has to ask for a specialist. Then the local offices search through their lists of applicants and advise that volunteers go to a certain country. Usually volunteers are expected to stay on their job for two years. But if a volunteer feels unhappy, cannot cope with the climate or the general living conditions, or if there develops a threatening situation, they can go back home before the two-year term is out.
To qualify for the job, Peace Corps volunteers have to answer certain requirements: they have to be of age; they have to be committed to the job; they have to be a college graduate, or to have an extensive experience in the chosen field.
Imagine that you are interviewing a Peace Corps volunteer. Act as a reporter and supply questions to the answers given. Your group mate should read the answers, given by John Smith, a Peace Corps volunteer, who has recently come to Volgograd.
B: I went to Peace Corps because I'm interested in travel. I also wanted to learn another language.
B: I felt I wasn't doing any good for anything at home.
B: Peace Corps does a variety of jobs, e.g. agriculture, teaching, business advising.
B: In Russia, it's 80% teaching English, and also a little business advising.
B: Because in Minnesota, there's winter, and a change of seasons. I didn't feel I could handle, say, very cold temperatures all the year round.
B: No, I didn't ask specially to be sent to Volgograd, but I was glad when I learned I was coming here.
B: Yes, people are very friendly, and the Russian hospitality is amazing.
8. Compare your questions with those of other members of the group. What else would you ask in an interview? Here is a list of suggested topics:
|The city of Volgograd||Educational problems||The Russian Language|
|Customs and traditions||Climate and Weather||Extension|
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