Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The REAL Application Process

In my prior post I outlined the 11 step process to becoming a voluteer. Seems really straightforward, doesn't it? Now you get to see what the reality of those 11 "easy" steps actually looks like. Each entry involved some sort of phone call, paperwork, paperwork, and more paperwork. As always, remember to be patient (and organized)--it will be worth it!

6.07-7.07 Did LOTS of research and worked on my on-line application.
7.5.07 Submitted on-line application and Health Status Review form.
7.10.07 Had phone interview to follow up on intelligence activities by myself or family. Received Legal Clearance to proceed with application process.
7. 13.07 Last letter of recommendation submitted on-line. Recruited called and we scheduled the Interview
7.18.07 Interviewed at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Office in Arlington, VA. Interview/paperwork/fingerprints took three hours to complete. Recruiter requested two additional references from a close personal friend and a volunteer coordinator. Said he would call me shortly about a nomination spot once additional letters had been received.
7.19.07 Requested additional letters from friend and volunteer coordinator.
7.24.07 Additional recommendation letters were submitted on-line.
7.24.07 Recruiter called with my placement options and job assignment. I can choose between Sub-Saharan Africa and Eastern Europe, both working on Farm Management and Agribusiness. I told him I needed a day to think about it–I called back 3 hours later and said, “I want to go to Africa.”
7.24.07 I am officially a Peace Corp Nominee!
7.28.07 Received medical packet. Began filling out forms and scheduling appointments
8.8.07 Had dentist appointment (now I can flash an awesome smile through this long process)
8.10.07 Met with doctor to start filling out forms and get some shots (Tetanus, polio booster, TB). Need to schedule yet another appointment to complete paperwork
8.13.07 Blood work completed (I hope). Ouch!
8.14.07 Had ophthalmologist fill out eye glasses prescription form
8.15.07-8.20.07 More doctors appointments, lots of blood tests, waiting for lab results, more calls to doctors office. eh.
8.25.07 Hand delivered medical packet to the Peace Corp Headquarters in Washington, D.C.
9.05.07 Received dental clearance
9.06.07 Peace Corps “officially” receives my medical packet. Now, I wait.
10.25.07 I receive my medical clearance–huge relief!!!! Peace Corps needs yet another recommendation from a work supervisor. I call old employee and have recommendation letter sent.
10.29.07 Talked to someone in the Africa Placement Office. She told me I have been invited to serve in the U.S. Peace Corps!
11.5.07 Received my invitation to serve as an Environment volunteer in Malawi!
11.7.07 Call HQ to accept my placement
11.16.07 Mailed my passport to HQ and provided an updated resume and aspiration statement to the Malawi Country Desk
1.20.08 Received my staging packet
2.21.08 Go to Arlington, VA for staging
2.23.08 Fly to Johannesburg, South Africa for a overnight layover
2.25.08 Fly to Lilongwe, Malawi!

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