Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program

UMSI graduate and Peace Corps Volunteer Jeff Bennett (MSI ’16), left, worked with young people in the Dominican Republic as part of his service.

The University of Michigan School of Information, in partnership with the U.S. Peace Corps, provides Returned Peace Corps Volunteers the opportunity to earn a Master of Science in Information (MSI) through the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows program.  

The Paul D. Coverdell Fellows program offers financial support to those who have served as a Peace Corps Volunteer, Peace Corps Response (PCR) Volunteer, or Global Health Service Partnership Volunteer prior to enrolling in UMSI’s MSI program.

Coverdell Fellow alumni

  • Jeffrey Bennett (Dominican Republic, 2012-2014) interned as a Open Educational Resources Operations Assistant with the Open.Michigan initiative housed in the University of Michigan’s Medical School Information Services. As an intern, Jeff created a new workflow for publishing eBooks using the EPUB format and worked with faculty to manage publishing projects with the purpose of extending outreach beyond the U-M campus and making information publicly accessible. (Video)
  • Sarah Anderson (Albania, 2010-2012) was an HMIS Data Analyst with the Washtenaw County Office of Community and Economic Development, where she analyzed the homelessness data collected by OCED to develop a system for verifying chronic homelessness and creating a more informed process for assigning available rooms in housing provisions. (Video)
  • Jessamen Bartley-Matthews  (Nicaragua 2010-2012) interned for Girls Who Code, a nonprofit working to close the gender gap in technology. She has also served as Lead UX Design Fellow for the University of Michigan Office of Academic Innovation where she led the UX and visual redesign of an online application. Currently, she is a content strategist at Facebook.
  • Ben Rearick (Sierra Leon 2016, Ethiopia 2013-2015) assisted a research team with an Institute of Museum and Library Serves funded project as Research LabFellow at MLibrary. Since, he has served in more library roles, including Library Supervisor at University of Idaho and Web Services and Usability Librarian at Washington State University.  
  • Peter Gray (Tonga 2012-2014) has worked as a UX researcher for Spotify, and currently works for Google. As User Research Intern at Spotify, Peter worked with designers, data scientists, and product owners to conduct user research, and supported the launch of a new product.

Up to two incoming Returned Peace Corps Volunteers will be selected each year to be Coverdell Fellows. 

Coverdell Fellowship program funding

All RPCVs receive an application fee waiver to the MSI program. RPCVs who are selected as a Coverdell Fellow will receive a 50 to 100% tuition scholarship to the University of Michigan School of Information. Coverdell Fellows are encouraged to participate in U-M and UMSI’s Peace Corps recruitment activities and have an expectation to bring the third goal of the Peace Corps to the University.

Applicants for the Coverdell Fellows program must meet UMSI’s Master of Science in Information admissions qualifications and indicate in their application to the School that they are a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer and in which Peace Corps program they completed their service. 

Coverdell Fellowship contact information

School of Information
(734) 763-2285