Ev’s Peace Corps Armenia FAQs and Responses

By | May 2, 2011

I have been asked a ton of questions lately about my upcoming Peace Corps volunteering in Armenia. Here are some of those questions and my answers as I know them thus far. Add any additional questions you may have in the comments.

So when do you leave?
What are you going to be doing over there?
Where is Armenia?
Is it a Muslim country?
What’s the climate like?
How long are you going to be gone?
Are you going to be there the whole time?
Can you come home for holidays and stuff?
What if you don’t like it there?
Do they provide housing?
What language do they speak?
Do you have to know the language before you go?

So when do you leave?
Beginning of June, 2011. I have one month left in the United States.

What are you going to be doing over there?
Something related to computers. Maybe helping small businesses set up websites, maybe teaching computers to middle and high school students, maybe something else. It depends on the needs of the community I am placed in.

Where is Armenia?
In Eastern Europe, sandwiched between Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Iran. It’s small: about the size of Maryland.

Map of Armenian and other European Countries

Armenia is circled in red.

Is it a Muslim country?
No, it’s Christian. In fact, it was the first country to adopt Christianity as it’s official religion in 301 A.D.

What’s the climate like?
Somewhat similar to where I grew up, in the U.P. (Upper Peninsula of Michigan). Cold winters with snow, and hot summers. There are mountains there, so the actual weather I experience will depend on if I am placed somewhere in the mountains or in the valleys.

How long are you going to be gone?
Just over two years. I should be back in August, 2013.

Are you going to be there the whole time?
Yes, most likely. When you are placed in one country, Peace Corps does not usually send you to another country, unless there is a major problem and they have to evacuate you. (For example: dangerous civil unrest)

Can you come home for holidays and stuff?
If I wanted to, yes. I could save up my 2 vacation days per month and come home for a time. But I probably won’t. I would rather take advantage of where I am, and spend my vacation time in neighboring countries.

What if you don’t like it there?
I’m a volunteer, so they can’t “make” me stay. If I want to terminate my service early, I can do so at any time.

Do they provide housing?
Yes. I will be living with a host family for the first three months in one village for training, and with another host family in my placement village for another couple months. After that, I have the option to move out on my own.

What language do they speak?
Eastern Armenian. The Armenian alphabet is completely different than the English alphabet, so I have to learn new letters, new sounds, AND new words.

Do you have to know the language before you go?
No, although they recommend studying and becoming familiar with it. The first three months I’m there will focus heavily on language training.



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2 thoughts on “Ev’s Peace Corps Armenia FAQs and Responses

  1. Ryan

    hello, are you following news reports of the various protests and unrest in the Middle East? does that worry you at all???

    1. Ev Post author

      I realize there is a lot of unrest in the Middle East, but I knew going in that the Peace Corps doesn’t always send people to the “best” areas. There is going to be risk no matter where they send me. It helps me to keep in mind that the Peace Corps is constantly monitoring political situations and will make the decision to evacuate a particular area if they feel the situation warrants it. I believe they have a better overall knowledge of what’s going on than I do, so I’m not overly worried for my safety.

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