Friday, September 14, 2012

Albania March 2013!!!

I had my final interview today at 10am. My placement specialist asked me a couple questions about religion and race, and then proceeded to tell me about the next steps in the process after my INVITATION. Now that the process has changed, they are electronically sending the invitations the same day that you get invited (no more waiting!). I am SO SO excited to go to Albania! Our staging is March 18th. I have 7 days to accept the invitation, and while I need to read through the mountain of info they gave me first.. I am 99.9% be sure that I am accepting that invitation! This process took me exactly 1 year and 5 days from start to Invite.

I'm so happy :))

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Phone call from the 202

Today I received a phone call from my placement specialist, and unfortunately I happened to be driving on the freeway at the time so I couldn't talk on the phone. The first time she called I just sadly stared at my phone wishing I could pick it up and then the 2nd time I picked it up and told her I could talk in 15 minutes. She wasn't sure if she would still be in the office in 15 minutes so she set up a time for us to talk at 10am (Cali time) tomorrow morning! Could this be it..the final interview? And if there a possibility I could finallllly receive an invitation sometime next week? I have so many mixed emotions because I get really excited when I think about it, but I don't want to get my hopes up if it's just something small..or worse.. a rejection from the PC after a year's worth of application process. My RAS has been pretty out of control lately, and I am on PC Journals and PC wiki more than once..daily. I've been constantly looking at the staging dates, and there is one listed for Morocco in January so I think that was what my original nomination was for. However, there is also one for Albania in March so maybe that is where I will be sent. There's really no point in speculating any of these things because PC is so unpredictable, and I know I will be happy as long as I get to go somewhere. *Sighh.. anyway here are the 3 main things that I feel contribute the most to RAS:

1) People constantly asking when, where, and what you'll be doing in the Peace Corps..when you don't even know if you're going to serve. However, you still tell them you are going to the Peace Corps because that is what you're planning on/hoping so desperately for.
2) Reading about other PCV's invitations and thinking " seems like they have way more going for them than I do. No wonder they got an invitation."
3) Not really being able to commit to a job that will lead into a career..finding things to take your mind off of all PC related thing.

Patience, patience, patience... just got to stay positive and preoccupied.

Friday, September 7, 2012

No more North Africa/Middle East in January flexible, right? 50% of applicants don't go where they were originally nominated for so it's no surprise I will not be going to the North Africa/Middle East region in January anymore. I received this email today (I will post it at the bottom of this blog) which pretty much explains everything. The questionnaire I was asked to fill out asked me many questions such as what I've been doing to prepare, what my physical capabilities were, what challenges I expected to face etc. I sent it in maybe 1 or 2 hours after she sent it to me. I am a little bummed that my new departure date is in March and that I will not be going to N.A./M.E., but that's okay. At least a Placement specialist is looking at my application. Also, Eastern Europe sounds pretty cool, and I never had any preferences of destination anyway. It is just funny because I speak both spanish and french, and now they have selected a region in which those languages will be somewhat useless.

The following is the email I received today from my Placement Specialist:

Hello Miranda-My name is ________ and I am the Placement and Assessment Specialist working with your application.  I wanted to touch base with you today about where you stand in the process.  First, the Office of Medical Services (OMS) has deemed you medically qualified for service and provided the Placement and Assessment Office with site specific support guidelines to ensure that you may serve healthfully and happily. These guidelines are based on 50 years of institutional knowledge, and the available medical care in each of our host countries.  The Placement and Assessment Specialist must work within these guidelines to make sure the Applicant is considered for the appropriate programs.  Part of this process involves seeking individual medical approval on behalf of the applicant, from Peace Corps Medical Staff in specific host countries.    The Placement and Assessment Office works very hard to identify placements for all qualified and suitable applicants.  The placement process is complex and accommodating these guidelines adds another layer of complexity.  All applicants are asked to demonstrate their flexibility and willingness to serve where  and in the capacity Peace Corps deems their skills are most needed and this is especially true when site specific support guidelines must be considered. Your medical information is confidential, and the details are not shared with the Placement and Assessment Office.  If you would like to discuss medical questions feel free to contact OMS at __________At this time I can confirm that the program to which you were originally nominated is not an option, medically speaking.  I have received medical approval however, for an alternate program.  Based on your medical clearance, and our upcoming programmatic needs, you are now under consideration for the following program:·        
English Teaching·         Eastern Europe·         Departing: March 2013

Your application has undergone a preliminary placement review and I am in the process of conducting the final assessment.  As part of this assessment I would like to review and answer the attached questions.  Please send your responses, by of before Friday, Sept 14th.  I look forward to hearing from you.
Warm Regards,