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Baby boomers joining the Peace Corps

Sept. 17, 2007 at 1:04 PM

CLEVELAND, Sept. 17 (UPI) -- A growing number of citizens over the age of 50 are joining the U.S. Peace Corps.

The organization created by U.S. President John Kennedy began a recruiting drive this summer hoping to sign up baby boomers approaching retirement age, The Cleveland Plain-Dealer reported Monday.

A Peace Corps spokeswoman in Chicago said recruiting older citizens makes a lot of sense.

"They have life experience and skills," Christine Torres told the newspaper. "They bring so much to the table."

Among the 5 percent of volunteers over the age of 50 are John Baker, 70, and his wife, Kathy, 61, of Collinwood, Ohio. Instead of playing golf in Florida, the couple signed up for a 27-month stint in the Peace Corps.

John, who used to run the executive MBA program at Cleveland State University, worked as a business adviser in Romania while Kathy taught middle school there.

"It's a wonderful way to do something for your country," John told the Plain Dealer.

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