God please give me patience…HURRY UP!
While the process is much faster than years past, the average wait time from application-to-invitation is still an 8-10 month timeline.
Seeing as you are applying to leave your home for the better part of two years, this can put someone at the beginning of this process in a stressful and exposed situation.
In this article, we’ll talk about three ways to help get through the Peace Corps waiting game and how to make the best use of your time.
Expedite the process
Set yourself up for success and reduce the waiting time if it is in your control to do so.
Apply weeks before the application deadline. This puts you ahead of the massess with respect to interviews and logically puts you in a great position to receive an invitation as early as possible.
A helpful reference on job postings can be found here and below:
Postings in February - Departs January through March of the following year
Postings in May - Departs April through June of the following year
Postings in August - Departs July through September of the following year
Postings in November - Departs October through December of the following year
Once you’ve been accepted, be relentless on your to-do’s. Stay on your references. Complete your legal background and medical requirements as soon as possible. Make sure the burden of decision making stays on Peace Corps. Then, settle in and wait.
But what to do while you wait?
Make some money
If you’re applying for the Peace Corps, you have about a 10-month period where it is difficult to justify a long-term professional commitment - but those bills (and student loans) still need to be paid.
You can make a dollar almost anywhere now a days. You can take surveys with SwagBucks. You can donate plasma.
A popular option that many Returned Peace Corps volunteers turn to after their Peace Corps service is online teaching.
Yup, this option is available for you as well. Might as well take advantage.
VIPKID online teaching is the dominate player by far. You have 25 minute, one-on-one sessions with Chinese children, teaching them the basic fundamentals of English. The work is fun and it pays pretty well. We should know - it’s how half of our team keeps food on the table.
You can make close to $22 an hour and you’ll have control of your schedule.
Relax and enjoy your time
It’s easy to forget that you are about to leave home for the next 27 months. Your family, your friends…they’re probably going to miss you. You’ll probably miss them.
Try your best not to get so wrapped up in the waiting game that you forgo the precious moments that are passing by.
Make a list of your favorite foods and gorge out.
Spend a little extra time with your family and lock in those future care packages.
It happens to everyone - we get so focused on what is coming that we forget to see what we already have. Trust us, at some point in your service you’ll be laying in bed (probably sweating) and reminiscing on those last few months back home. Try to enjoy them.
Congratulations on making it through this article and preparing yourself for your Peace Corps experience. You can find more information about Preparing for the Peace Corps, Peace Corps Discounts, and Concerned Parents in our other articles.
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Hope to hear from you!
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