August 17, 1994
Media Contact: Kate Pipkin
Phone: (410) 955-7552

Returned Peace Corps volunteers enrolled in The Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing will begin working in underserved communities as part of a $500,000 grant from the AmeriCorps Health and Housing Fellows Program. The program, which begins September 1994, is part of the national service initiative signed into law by President Clinton.

Through AmeriCorps, individuals of all ages and backgrounds will address the nation's education, public safety, human, and environmental needs through service. In exchange for that service, participants receive financial assistance towards higher education. At the School of Nursing, AmeriCorps members will receive a stipend and an award to help finance their nursing education.

While at Hopkins, the 10 returned Peace Corps volunteers in AmeriCorps will teach preventive health measures to families participating in the Rutland Transitional Housing Program in Baltimore City. Rutland provides transitional housing and comprehensive social services for about 37 homeless families in East Baltimore. All of the AmeriCorps activities at Rutland will be supervised by community health nursing faculty.

"This is a way for students to get really valuable experience," said Stella Shiber, Ph.D., associate dean of the School's undergraduate program and head of the AmeriCorps program at Hopkins. "Living and working directly in the community is a unique way for community health nursing students to receive clinical education while meeting the human needs of low-income, underserved and homeless families."

The School of Nursing and the United States Peace Corps have already collaborated to create programs that integrate academic study at Hopkins with volunteer service in the Peace Corps.

In the AmeriCorps program, Hopkins School of Nursing is part of a consortium of four public health and nursing schools in the country, all of which will receive grants. The other schools are Boston University School of Public Health, University of Alabama Birmingham School of Public Health, and University of Texas El Paso School of Public Health.

-- JHMI --
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