Continuing its rise in the rankings of colleges and universities that send the largest number of volunteers to serve in the Peace Corps, UC Santa Barbara sits among the top 10 campuses in the country. There are currently 76 UCSB undergraduate alumni serving overseas.
Ascending six spots over last year, UCSB is now No. 10 on Peace Corps’ 2013 Top Colleges list, according to rankings released Tuesday. The campus moved up from No. 16 in 2012, No. 22 in 2011 and No. 28 in 2010. It is the first time in nine years that UCSB has ranked in the top 10, and the 11th straight year that it has appeared in the top 25.
“We are honored to be recognized as one of the top 10 large universities nationwide for the number of our UC Santa Barbara alumni who volunteer to serve in the Peace Corps,” UCSB Chancellor Henry Yang said. “Our campus has long supported the important work of the Peace Corps, and we are very proud of the values and commitment of our students and alumni who selflessly volunteer their time and energy to help improve the quality of life for people around the world.”
UCSB ranks third among large California schools for 2013. Historically, 1,595 UCSB alumni have served as Peace Corps volunteers since the organization’s 1961 inception, making the campus 11th on the list of all-time top-producing universities.
“Peace Corps announces top colleges annually to recognize the schools that contribute the most alumni who are making a difference overseas through volunteer service,” Peace Corps West Coast Regional Manager Janet Allen said. “We thank and congratulate the University of California, Santa Barbara, as one of the 23 universities from the West Coast producing globally minded leaders who turn idealism into action as Peace Corps volunteers. It’s wonderful to see UCSB move up six spots this year.”
In total, six UC campuses are ranked on the list of top 25 large universities, including all top five volunteer-producing schools in California. Currently, more than 8,000 volunteers are working with communities in 76 host countries on projects related to agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health and youth.
The Peace Corps’ Top Colleges report ranks colleges and universities according to the size of their student body. In a tie for first place, the University of Washington and the University of Florida led all large institutions with 107 undergraduate alumni currently serving overseas. UCLA and UC Berkeley led large California schools, with 85 volunteers apiece.
Click here to view the complete Peace Corps rankings for 2013.