Student Guide

1. Training and Experience

Requirements: Three Courses + 50 Hours Related Experience in a Specific Work Sector

For PC Prep, you need to complete at least three courses that align with a specific work sector (they can, but do not need to, come from your academic major or minor). You also must accumulate a minimum of 50 hours of volunteer or work experience in that same sector, preferably in a teaching or outreach capacity.

Education

Teach lessons that last a lifetime. Education is the Peace Corp’s largest program area. Volunteers play an important role in creating links among schools, parents and communities by working in elementary, secondary and postsecondary schools as math, science, conversational English and resource teachers, or as early grade reading and literacy teacher trainers. Volunteers also develop libraries and technology resource centers.

Recommended Courses

  • ECON 3336 Economics of Education
  • ED 3314 The American Public School
  • ED 3339 Educational Psychology for Teachers
  • ED 3340 Math Concepts for Teachers
  • GST 4311 Gender and Education
  • PSCI 4382 Education Policy and the Politics of Education
  • PSY 3339 Educational Psychology
  • SOC 3331 Education and Society

Other courses may fit criteria, but must be submitted for individual consideration.

Courses may have pre-requisites required by the school offering the course.

Related Work Experience

  • Teaching in one of these or a similar form: in a classroom, with a community outreach organization, or in a formal tutoring capacity.
    • The subject of the teaching may be English as a foreign/second language, special education, drama, or a STEM subject.
    • Be a tutor – AVID tutor, PLTL program at UTD, ACT/SAT Prep, etc.
    • Teach/work/volunteer for daycare, Sunday school at church, after school programs, or summer school programs.
  • Volunteering with the Office of Student Volunteerism, which provides group service experiences free of charge to any currently enrolled UT Dallas student. Visit their website for a full list of upcoming events.
    • Alternative Spring Break (40 hours offered each spring).
    • Homework Helpers volunteer event (2.5 hours offered at least one time/semester).
    • Tech Tutors (three hours offered at least one time/semester).

Health

Serve on the front lines of global health. Health volunteers work within their communities to promote important topics such as nutrition, maternal and child health, basic hygiene and water sanitation. Volunteers also work in HIV/AIDS education and prevention programs to train youth as peer educators, develop appropriate education strategies, provide support to children orphaned by the pandemic, and create programs that provide emotional and financial support to families and communities affected by the disease.

Recommended Courses

  • BIOL 3370 Exercise Physiology
  • BIOL 3455 Human Anatomy and Physiology with Lab I
  • BIOL 3456 Human Anatomy and Physiology with Lab II
  • ECON 3330 Economics of Health
  • GEOG 3357 Spatial Dimensions of Health and Disease
  • HIST 3328 History and Philosophy of Science and Medicine
  • HLTH 1322 Human Nutrition
  • HLTH 3306 Gender in Healthcare
  • IPEC 4310 Environmental and Health Policy in East Asia
  • IPEC 4384 Health and Environmental Policy: A Global Perspective
  • NSC 3344 Anatomy and Physiology of Speech and Hearing
  • NSC 4356 Neurophysiology
  • NSC 4366 Neuroanatomy
  • PHIL 4320 Medical Ethics
  • PHIL 4321 Philosophy of Medicine
  • PSCI 4365 Law and Medicine
  • SOC 3315 Socio-Behavioral Sciences for Medicine
  • SOC 4369 Public Health and Society
  • SOC 4372 Health and Illness
  • SOC 4391 Community Health Practice

Other courses may fit criteria, but must be submitted for individual consideration.

Courses may have pre-requisites required by the school offering the course.

Related Work Experience

  • Volunteer or work experience in such areas as HIV/AIDS outreach, hospice, family planning counseling, emergency medical technician (EMT) or CPR teaching/certification, maternal health, and hands-on caregiving in a hospital, clinic, or lab technician setting.
  • Counseling or teaching in health subjects.
  • Working as a resident advisor in a dormitory, as a peer nutritionist, or as a sexually transmitted infections counselor.
  • Significant experience in mechanical repairs, construction, carpentry, masonry, plumbing, hydrology, or set design.
  • Job shadow in a health setting, hospital, etc.
  • Volunteer/work for a department of human services, local health-related non-profits, resource center such as the LGBT center in downtown Dallas, blood drives/health screenings.
  • Volunteering with the Office of Student Volunteerism, which provides group service experiences free of charge to any currently enrolled UT Dallas student. Visit their website for a full list of upcoming events.
    • Alternative Spring Break (40 hours offered each spring).
    • Hearts on Health: Scottish Rite Hospital (three hours offered at least one time/semester).

Environment

Help forge a global movement to protect our planet. Volunteers lead grassroots efforts in their communities to protect the environment and strengthen understanding of environmental issues. They teach environmental awareness in elementary and secondary schools and to youth groups and community organizations, empowering communities to make their own decisions about how to protect and conserve the local environment. Volunteers also address environmental degradation by promoting sustainable use of natural resources.

Recommended Courses

  • BIS 3310 Environmental Studies Project
  • ECON 4332 Energy & Natural Resources Economics
  • ECON 4333 Environmental Economics
  • ECON 4336 Environmental Economic Theory and Policy
  • GEOG/PA 3377 Urban Planning and Policy
  • GEOS 2302 The Global Environment
  • IPEC 3349 World Resources and Development
  • IPEC 4310 Environmental and Health Policy in East Asia
  • IPEC 4384 Health and Environmental Policy: A Global Perspective
  • NATS 2333 Energy, Water, and the Environment
  • PSCI 4304 Energy and Environmental Politics and Policy
  • SOC/PA 3382 Sustainable Communities

Other courses may fit criteria, but must be submitted for individual consideration.

Courses may have pre-requisites required by the school offering the course.

Related Work Experience

  • Educating the public about the environmental or conservation issues, or working on environmental campaigns.
  • Conducting biological surveys of plants or animals.
  • Gardening, farming, nursery management, organic or low-input vegetable production, or landscaping.
  • Providing technical assistance and training in natural resource management.
  • Volunteer/work with city/community beautification projects.
  • Volunteer/work for local/national parks, park and rec departments, park cleanup or Trinity Trust in Dallas.
  • Volunteering with the Office of Student Volunteerism, which provides group service experiences free of charge to any currently enrolled UT Dallas student. Visit their website for a full list of upcoming events.
    • Alternative Spring Break (40 hours offered each spring).
    • Butterfly Flutterby (two hours offered two times per semester).
    • Operation Upcycle (two hours offered one time per semester).
    • Adopt-a-Highway (two hours offered one time per semester).
    • UT Dallas Community Garden Program (One-time event – two hours offered one time/semester, ongoing participation as a garden helper or plot holder–5-15 hours per semester).

Agriculture

Lead grassroots efforts to fight hunger in a changing world. Agricultural volunteers work with small-scale farmers and families to increase food security and production and adapt to climate change while promoting environmental conservation practices. They introduce farmers to techniques that prevent soil erosion, reduce the use of harmful pesticides, and replenish the soil. They work alongside farmers on integrated projects that often combine vegetable gardening, livestock management, agroforestry, and nutrition education.

Recommended Courses

Other courses may fit criteria, but must be submitted for individual consideration.

Courses may have pre-requisites required by the school offering the course.

Related Work Experience

  • Working with a large-scale or family-run business involving vegetable gardening, farming, nursery work, tree planting or care, urban forestry, landscaping, livestock care and management, or fish cultivation and production.
  • Teaching or tutoring the public in environmental or agricultural issues/activities.
  • Working on the business management or marketing side of a commercial farm.
  • Participate in 4H.
  • Volunteer at a community garden.
  • Volunteer with agricultural associations (American Cattlemen, Quarter Horse, etc.).
  • Volunteer/work at science/natural history museum.
  • Volunteering with the Office of Student Volunteerism, which provides group service experiences free of charge to any currently enrolled UT Dallas student. Visit their website for a full list of upcoming events.
    • Alternative Spring Break (40 hours offered each spring).
    • UT Dallas Community Garden Program (One-time event – two hours offered one time/semester, ongoing participation as a garden helper or plot holder–5-15 hours per semester).

Youth in Development

Empower the next generation of changemakers. Volunteers work with youth in communities on projects that promote engagement and active citizenship, including gender awareness, employability, health and HIV/AIDS education, environmental awareness, sporting programs, and info technology.

Recommended Courses

  • AMS 3374 Entrepreneurs in America
  • CRIM 3310 Youth Crime and Justice
  • ECON 3315 Sports Economics
  • ENTP 4340 Social Entrepreneurship
  • GST 4311 Gender and Education
  • IPEC 3349 World Resources and Development
  • ISSS 4320 Social Entrepreneurship
  • PA 3379 Diversity in the Public Sector
  • SOC 2320 Contemporary Social Issues
  • SOC 3343 Sociology of the Family
  • SOC 3346 Sociology of Sport
  • SOC 4375 Gender and Work
  • SOC/PA 4386 Social Policy in Modern Societies
  • SOCS 4320 Social Entrepreneurship

Other courses may fit criteria, but must be submitted for individual consideration.

Courses may have pre-requisites required by the school offering the course.

Related Work Experience

  • Teaching or counseling in at-risk youth programs.
  • Activities that involve planning, organizing, assessing community needs, counseling, and leadership, in areas such as education, youth development, health and HIV/AIDS, the environment, and/or business.
  • Volunteer/teach in religious youth group and/or Sunday school.
  • Work/volunteer at a summer camp, after school program, library, daycare, Special Olympics.
  • Volunteering with the Office of Student Volunteerism, which provides group service experiences free of charge to any currently enrolled UT Dallas student. Visit their website for a full list of upcoming events.
    • Alternative Spring Break (40 hours offered each spring).
    • Homework Helpers volunteer event (2.5 hours offered at least one time/semester).

Community Economic Development

Harness 21st-century tools to help communities lift themselves. Volunteers work with development banks, nongovernmental organizations, and municipalities to strengthen infrastructure and encourage economic opportunities in communities. They frequently teach in classroom settings and work with entrepreneurs and business owners to develop and market their products. Some volunteers also teach basic computer skills and help communities take advantage of technologies such as e-commerce, distance learning, and more.

Recommended Courses

Other courses may fit criteria, but must be submitted for individual consideration.

Courses may have pre-requisites required by the school offering the course.

Related Work Experience

  • Working with businesses, organizations, or cooperatives in accounting, finance, microfinance, management, project management, budgeting, or marketing.
  • Starting and running your own business or other entrepreneurial activity.
  • Training others in computer literacy, maintenance, and repair.
  • Website design or online marketing.
  • Founding or leading a community- or school-based organization.
  • Volunteer with local chamber of commerce or small business development center.
  • Volunteer on local/regional campaign.
  • Volunteer with Junior Achievement or Future Business Leaders of America.

2. Professional and Leadership Development

Requirements: Resume and Interview Support + Leadership Experience

Peace Corps service and similar international development work opportunities are highly professional and selective.

PC Prep requires three specific activities that will strengthen your candidacy for the Peace Corps (or any other professional endeavor).

  1. Have your resume critiqued by someone in the Career Center.
  2. Attend a workshop or class on interview skills at the Career Center.
  3. Develop at least one significant leadership experience and be prepared to discuss it thoughtfully. For example, organizing a campus event, leading a work or volunteer project, or serving on the executive board of a student organization.

Students are encouraged to take advantage of numerous leadership and community service programs including the following classes and other organized opportunities:

3. Intercultural Competence

Requirements: One Core Course + Two Electives Courses or Substantive Intercultural Experience (40 hours)

Engaging thoughtfully and fluidly across cultures begins with one’s own self-awareness. With this learning objective, you will deepen your cultural agility through a mix of three introspective courses in which you learn about others while reflecting on yourself in relation to others.

The goal is for you to build your capacity to shift perspective and behavior around relevant cultural differences. Example courses:

Take at least one core course

And choose two elective courses from the above list or those below:

Internationally Oriented Courses

  • ARHM 2341 Global Media
  • ECON 4360 International Trade
  • ECON 4362 Development Economics
  • ECON 4382 International Finance
  • GEOG 3359 Human Migration and Mobility: Global Patterns
  • GEOG 3372 Population and Development
  • GISC 4386 Global Change and Its Challenges
  • HIST 3369 United States Foreign Relations
  • IMS 3310 International Business
  • IMS 4320 International Marketing
  • IMS 4330 Global Human Resource Management
  • IPEC 4303 Political Economy of South and Southeast Asia
  • IPEC 4304 Political Economy of Latin America
  • IPEC 4305 Topics in Science, Technology and Institutions
  • IPEC 4307 Regional Topics in International Political Economy
  • IPEC 4308 Political Economy of Africa
  • IPEC 4309 Urban Development
  • IPEC 4310 Environmental and Health Policy in East Asia
  • IPEC 4375 Benefit-Cost Analysis
  • IPEC 4376 Foreign Policy and Public Opinion

Africa

  • GEOG 4396 Selected Topics in Geography*
  • HIST 4357 Topics in African and African-American History
  • IPEC 4307 Regional Topics in International Political Economy*
  • IPEC 4308 Political Economy of Africa
  • ISSS 4V86 Special Interdisciplinary Topics in the Social Sciences*

* If relevant region

Europe

  • HIST 4339 Berlin: History of a City
  • HIST 4344 Topics in European History
  • IPEC 4307 Regional Topics in International Political Economy*
  • ISSS 4V86 Special Interdisciplinary Topics in the Social Sciences*
  • LIT 3312 Studies in Prose Narrative (If Don Quixote in World Literature)
  • LIT 3318 British Romanticism
  • LIT 3319 Periods in English Literature
  • LIT 3320 Shakespeare
  • LIT 3321 Modern British Literature
  • LIT 3343 European Romanticism
  • LIT 3344 European Realism and Naturalism
  • LIT 3381 Topics in Western Literature
  • PSCI 4396 Selected Topics in Government and Politics*
  • SOC 3336 Culture Regions*

* If relevant region

Latin America

  • IPEC 4307 Regional Topics in International Political Economy*
  • ISAH 4V88 Spec. I.S. Topics in A&H (If Mexican Politics)
  • ISSS 4V86 Special Interdisciplinary Topics in the Social Sciences*
  • ISIS 3390 Costa Rica Field Trip
  • LIT 3312 Studies in Prose Narrative (If Don Quixote in World Literature)
  • LIT 3385 Topics in Latin American Literature
  • PSCI 4331 Mexican Politics
  • PSCI 4332 Latin American Politics
  • SOC 3336 Culture Regions*

* If relevant region

Middle East/Asia

  • GEOG 4396 Selected Topics in Geography*
  • HIST 3312 Early China
  • HIST 3313 Medieval China
  • HIST 3314 Traditional China
  • HIST 3315 Modern China
  • HIST 3316 Women in Traditional China
  • HIST 3351 The Ottoman Empire I
  • HIST 3352 The Ottoman Empire II
  • HIST 3355 Persians, Turks, and Mongols
  • HIST 3370 The American Experience in Vietnam
  • HIST 4358 Topics in Asian History
  • IPEC 4310 Environmental and Health Policy in East Asia
  • IPEC 4303 Political Economy of South and Southeast Asia
  • IPEC 4307 Regional Topics in International Political Economy*
  • ISIS 3335 United States and East Asia
  • ISSS 4V86 Special Interdisciplinary Topics in the Social Sciences*
  • LIT 3382 Topics in Non-Western Literature+
  • PSCI 4396 Selected Topics in Government and Politics*
  • PSCI 4312 Politics of East Asia
  • PSCI 4313 Politics of China
  • PSCI 4314 Political Economy of East Asia
  • SOC 3336 Culture Regions*

* If relevant region

+ If Modern Chinese Literature and Society

Or have a substantive intercultural experience (40 hours or more) through an activity such as:

4. Foreign Language Skills

Requirements: Optional. Requirements Vary Upon Desired Placement Site
  • Students interested in serving in Spanish-speaking countries must apply with strong intermediate proficiency, which is usually demonstrated by completing at least two 2000-level courses.
  • Students interested in serving in French-speaking countries must apply with intermediate proficiency in any Romance Language, which is usually demonstrated by completing at least one 2000-level course in any Romance Language.
  • For students interested in applying anywhere else, no explicit language requirements are necessary for most other countries. However, you will still likely learn and utilize another language during service. It is helpful to have taken at least one foreign language class.
  • If you are a strong native speaker of Spanish or French and want to serve in a country that speaks your native language, you are exempt from the language requirement.