The program currently has 397 Illinois residents.
The Peace Corps was established 50 years ago by President John F. Kennedy to promote service and understanding around the world.
Katie O'Connor is the Chicago Peace Corps regional manager and a former volunteer in Nicaragua. She says there is a strong network of former Peace Corps volunteers in the region who inspire others to consider international service.
Since the Corps' founding, more than 7,990 Peace Corps volunteers from Illinois have served in 139 countries.