By Kelly Brooks-Staub
As the only nursing school in the nation with a baccalaureate Peace Corps Fellows Program, Hopkins has seen the program nearly double over the last year. There are 44 participants this academic year, up from 23 in 2004-2005.
“Through the Peace Corps Fellows Program, students have the opportunity to translate their experiences from around the world into outstanding learning and service experiences in Baltimore,” says program coordinator and faculty member Lori Edwards, APRN, BC, MPH. “The students come to the school well-equipped to work with vulnerable populations in their own backyard.”
Peace Corps Fellows are required to participate in the school’s Community Outreach Program, which consists of taking the course Community Outreach to Underserved Populations in Urban Baltimore and then working in a multitude of clinics, schools, and community settings to provide health care services for the city’s uninsured and underinsured populations. In exchange for their commitment to community health nursing, fellows may receive assistance or scholarships to cover a portion of their tuition cost.
“The goal of the Peace Corps Fellows Program is to provide fellows with every resource needed to prepare them for their futures as nurses,” explains Edwards.
Since 1991, the School of Nursing has graduated 229 Returned Peace Corps Volunteers from the baccalaureate program. Twenty-two are still at the school, continuing their education through graduate nursing programs.