My Peace Corps Application

I applied to the Peace Corps about a month ago. I’ve only told close friends and family, and to be honest, I didn’t even really want to tell them. I’m certainly not hiding it because I’m ashamed or embarrassed–the Peace Corps might be the most perfect opportunity for me and for my interests. I guess it might be similar to that feeling you get when you like someone, and they like you back, but it’s not official yet. I don’t want to share because I don’t want to “jinx” it. It’s too precious, new, and exciting; I just want to keep it all to myself.

Yesterday morning, I woke up to notifications on my phone. A few were about final grades that were posted (yay!), a few were Instagram likes, and a few were messages from friends. It was a pretty great morning notification-wise. The most important notification, though, was an email with the subject line: Peace Corps Application Update. With mixed feelings of excitement and dread, I opened up the email to this message:

Dear Erica,

We have reviewed your Peace Corps application and have placed you under consideration for Mozambique departing August 2017. Your application is being reviewed by a Placement Specialist. You will be contacted in the coming months if you are selected for an interview and if any additional information is needed. Please note that you are solely under consideration for the Mozambique program at this time. If your application is later considered for a different program within the same “know by” date, you will receive notice. If you have concerns related to this, please contact the Placement Office at the email/phone number listed below.

All candidates will be notified by March 1, 2017 with a decision regarding their application.

At first, I was a little disappointed. I’d specifically requested to be placed in a Latin American country based on my Spanish skills and the closeness to home. However, the more I looked into the opportunity, the more excited I became. I was being considered based on my Spanish skills; in Mozambique, they speak Portuguese, so Spanish language skills are incredibly helpful due to the similarity of the two languages. As far as the distance thing, well, that wasn’t getting any shorter no matter how hard I researched. However, the country is around 28% Catholic, which means I shouldn’t have any problems going to Mass regularly. It’s also around 18% Muslim, so I won’t be in a religious bubble and will get to experience more religious diversity. Mozambique is also very diverse culturally, with a combination of primarily Bantu, Swahili, and Portuguese. The more I look into the country, its culture, and its people, the more excited I am to have the opportunity to be considered to serve there.

This is the second step of my Peace Corps journey. I’m excited to see where it leads and am anxious to move on to the next step. I really hope I get offered an interview. Wish me luck!

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