Peace Corps info session explores post-graduation options


Mary Mitchell

Michael Gall, the Michigan recruiting representative for the Peace Corps spoke with students about his experiences volunteering in Micronesia and the many opportunities the Peace Corps has to offer.

KeyVonna Taylor, Staff Reporter

Students gathered last week to learn how they can gain cultural experience by engaging with others to make a difference worldwide through the Peace Corps.

Oakland University Career Services held an information session on Nov. 17 in the Oakland Center with Peace Corps Michigan Recruiter Michael Gall. Students were able to learn about various volunteer opportunities, ask questions and get advice about the application process.

“I wanted to join to make a difference,” Gall said.

Gall was invited to join the Peace Corps to teach English in Micronesia.

If you were to ask him if he chose to serve in Micronesia, he’d likely respond, “No, it chose me.”

Until the Peace Corps, he was not familiar with the island of Micronesia.

From 2007-2009, his assignment was teaching English as a second language and community development resources.

Gall impacted the community he served by attaining funds and organizing volunteers to build a basketball court that was completed after he left.

“My island completed it on their time, with their resources and without a Peace Corps volunteer,” Gall said.

In Gall’s honor, his name was placed on the court’s backboard as a symbol of the community’s appreciation.

“One day, I would like to join the Peace Corps again,” he said.

Hearing Gall’s firsthand experience encouraged students to get involved.

Rachel Bush, a junior double majoring in environmental science and French language and literature, has wanted to join the Peace Corps since age 16.

“I’ve always felt that my purpose in this world is bigger than myself,” she said, “My interests and my studies will help me to make that kind of impact in the lives of others, as well as my own.”

Although she has wanted to volunteer for years already, Bush found Gall’s experience compelling.

His experience [made] me want to volunteer more,” she said.

Junior communication major Lani Hennings is also interested in the Peace Corps.

I’m considering joining the Peace Corps because I’ve always had a passion for helping people and a passion for seeing the world,” Hennings said. “The Peace Corps is an amazing opportunity that opens up an abundance of more opportunities.”

“Michael [Gall] did a great job leading the info session,” she added. “He gave a lot of helpful information and talked about a lot of things I had never even thought of. It was really cool to hear his personal story. It was very inspiring, too.”

As the information session came to an end, Gall left students with a question: “What will your story be?”

The Peace Corp is active in over 60 countries, ranging from places in the Caribbean, Latin America, Africa, the Pacific Islands and beyond.

Interested in joining the Peace Corps?

Students who are graduating in spring 2017 and want to begin serving next summer must apply by the Jan. 1 deadline. For more information, visit