Peace corps

  1. I will be finishing a BSN program in July of 2006 and I am thinking about going into the peace corps. I already have an MPH and I am interested in L&D, OBGYN, mother/baby, and pediatrics with a community health / international focus.

    Has anyone gone into the peace corps with a nursing degree? How did you like it?
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    About WhatToDo

    Joined: Nov '04; Posts: 83
    Senior Project Coordinator, Baylor College of Medicine

    7 Comments

  3. by   renerian
    I cannot respond to your question but I am glad you posted it. Good to know. I hope someone can help you.

    renerian
  4. by   JonathanRN
    I want to bump this post because I want to know also: Has anyone volunteered for Peace Corps as an RN? What type of project were you involved in? Was it a worthwhile experience?

    Thanks in advance,
    Jonathan
  5. by   KatieBell
    Hi Jonathan,

    No, I have not worked Peace Corps, but through the org. I work with, I have been to Nicaragua, Eritrea, Nigeria and most recently the Soudan. In Peace Corp, the experience is designed for someone with a liberal arts BA, so you would not actually be using your BSN at all. I have spoken to a lot of returned volunteers and all of them worked only on community building projects, which to me is great, but it is not exactly nursing. This is why I chose to not persue the Peace Corps, in addition to living alone in the bush for two years seemed not so much fun. The cool thing about PC , however, is that they give you a lot of independence about how you create your project, so you must be a self starter and have a lot of creativity and patience...I am sure it could be a worthwhile experience. I do know one nurse who did PC and she stated that she really didn't do nursing either. It is, however, a good way to get a foot in the door but as a new graduate, you will also want to have some actual nursing experience if you want to move beyond PC...
    Nursing internationally in developing countries in the long term with organizations such as MSF, ACF, of Concern, is a "career" that is both rewarding and extremely challenging and stressful (please take it from my very intense personal experience). Most of these organizations require you to have several years experience in high stress type positions before they even consider sending you out.
    Hope this helps some. Feel free to PM me if you havemore questions...
  6. by   JonathanRN
    Has anyone volunteered in the Peace Corps as a married couple?!? I would love to hear about your experience...


    Jonathan
  7. by   TLR03
    I served in Nepal as a Peace Corps Volunteer from 2000-2002. I was a community health volunteer. Our main focus was to provide health education to our community and improve the practices of the health staff we were assigned to work for. I have a BA in Biochemistry and a MPH. However, one of my friends that served with me was a NP. There were lots of BSNs in the Peace Corps too. They were mostly assigned to nursing education. They would train Auxillary Nurse Midwives (Nepals version of an LPN, but with more responsibilites). So, they did some clinical stuff, but they functioned more as an instructor than a nurse. That is the whole point of Peace Corps (ie cultural exchange and exchange of techincal skill to host country nationals). If you are looking for a way to get experience in the world of international health, which is hard to come by, this is a great way to get it! It is a truly an amazing, once in a life time experience that I highly recommend.
  8. by   jeepgirl
    What about doctors without borders? they use nurses also. great organization.
  9. by   suzanne4
    Doctors without Borders requires at least two years experience as an RN, as do most other volunteer agencies, especially if you want to work in the field as a nurse............

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