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DESIRABILITY OF COORDINATING WITH INTERNATIONAL AGENCIES
The league is gratified to note that some other countries are already planning to initiate similar service programs, as Mr. Shriver mentioned in yesterday's testimony.
The league would like to see this type of project done eventually through the United Nations, so that qualified people from a wide range of countries wishing to serve could have the opportunity to do so. Meanwhile specific projects should be coordinated with the work of international agencies in the same field, e.g., the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization, and United Nations—UNESCO.
IMPROVED USE OF U.S. FOREIGN AID FUNDS
Is a Peace Corps advisable and practical? The University of Colorado Research Foundation-you just heard Mr. Rice of the University of Colorado Research Foundation-in its preliminary report answers this question with an emphatic "Yes.”
The league believes that there is a great need for such a corps sponsored and supported by the Government because (1) it will mean a better use of our foreign aid funds. U.S. aid to other countries is too often administered by the wealthy and corrupt few. In the past, consequently, we have given to foreign governments billions of dollars that brought little or no benefits to the common people. By contrast, the Peace Corps program seems ideally suited to insuring that the benefits of the effort are enjoyed by the people and not squandered by politicians or wasted by bureaucrats. By recruiting people with enough stamina and idealism to endure the rigorous living conditions as will be necessary for real communication, the Peace Corps program will help to build bridges of understanding where diplomacy and impersonal aid have failed.
BENEFICIAL EFFECTS ON AMERICAN YOUTH AND ON THE NATION
AS A WHOLE
2. The Peace Corps will give American youth a chance to prove its mettle and in doing so will prove to the world the unselfish intentions of our Nation. Abroad our young people are too often seen as callous and extravagant-an impression that is so often spread by the many wealthy tourists who go abroad from this country. At home our young people are too often considered a lazy generation. The Peace Corps in action would disprove both these misconceptions. The truth is that our young people will choose to rise.
Many of our skilled young men and women are both imaginative and capable of working on their own initiative. The effect of American young people working for a cause would restore the faith of many doubters. Our young people would rise to challenges to do something that is urgently needed.
(3) The league favors the proposed Peace Corps because it will increase America's knowledge of the problems which face the rising new nations. Although the main purpose of the Peace Corps is to teach useful skills to people in need another result will be to increase our own understanding of other peoples, their ordinary human needs, their cultures. The bridges of understanding carry traffic in both directions.
DESIRABILITY OF CAREFULLY TRAINED RECRUITS OF ALL AGES
There are some reasons for preferring college graduates for Peace Corps service. However, planners of the program must not overlook the great potential to be found in skilled workers-mechanics, roadbuilders, farmers, and others with practical hands and commonsense.
Then, too, we are glad that older and experienced citizens are also being considered for the corps. Many of them have certain specialized skills which, because of mechanization, are losing their usefulness in the United States, but which are still needed in the developing countries.
Whatever their age or qualifications, the members of our Peace Corps will need careful training, physically and psychologically, for rugged living conditions. They will also need a respect for native customs and some measure of language proficiency.
OBJECTION TO DESIGNATION OF CORPSMEN AS “AMERICAN GUERRILLAS"
One criticism already hurled at the Peace Corps idea from abroad is that the corpsmen would be “American guerrillas.” The league hopes that care will be taken to avoid earning such characterization. Members of the Peace Corps should be helpers, not reformers or advocates of political doctrines. It may be unwise to have the Peace Corps enter a country in which the United States is planning to engage in paramilitary training, as might happen in Malaya.
Newsweek, May 29, 1961, reports plans for training Americans for guerrilla warfare in Malaya, a country which has replied favorably to the Peace Corps overtures.
REASONS FOR ENDORSING PEACE CORPS
The league recognizes the great difficulties that will beset the Peace Corps and is therefore glad that it is intended to start on a modest basis.
The league heartily endorses the Peace Corps bill because we believe it will mean a better use of foreign aid funds, it will help Americans prove their sincerity of purpose, and it will increase mutual understanding between peoples.
Senator SPARKMAN. I think that is a very good statement, and I thank you very much.
Mrs. CROWLEY. Thank you.
Senator SPARKMAN. Next will be Mr. John Summerskill, representing the American Council on Education. Mr. Summerskill, we are glad to have you. Proceed in your own way.
STATEMENT OF JOHN SUMMERSKILL, REPRESENTING THE AMERI.
CAN COUNCIL ON EDUCATION
Mr. SUMMERSKILL. Mr. Chairman, and members of the committee, my name is John Summerskill. I am vice president of Cornell University in charge of student affairs. I appreciate the opportunity to appear before you today on behalf of the American Council on Education. The council has a membership of 146 educational organizations and 1,074 institutions, among them nearly all the accredited universities and colleges in the United States, as well as many junior colleges and professional schools. The statement I wish to make is very brief but I shall, of course, be happy to try to answer any questions the committee may wish to pose.
ENDORSEMENT OF THE CENTRAL PURPOSES OF THE CORPS BY THE BULK
OF THE ACADEMIC COMMUNITY
I shall not comment in detail on the pending Peace Corps legislation, but attempt instead to reflect views concerning the Peace Corps program which appear to be widely held in the academic community.
The central purposes of the Peace Corps are, I believe, widely endorsed among our institutions of higher education. I take these purposes to be two: (1) provision of certain types of assistance needed by nations less economically developed than ourselves, and (2) provision of an opportunity to trained American youth to serve this Nation in constructive programs of international cooperation. I should note the important benefit in this connection which can accrue to the United States through Peace Corps service—the acquisition by those who serve of vital new language skills and the broadening of firsthand knowledge of other areas and peoples. The general objectives and goals of the Peace Corps, in summary, appear admirably to fit President Kennedy's inaugural admonition, "Ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.
NEED TO ASSURE NECESSARY COMPETENCE OF VOLUNTEERS
However, there is appreciable concern within the academic community, in my view, regarding our ability to achieve these objectives. A strong realization of the critical need to assure the unquestioned competence of Peace Corps volunteers is the result of awareness that the tasks contemplated simply cannot be performed by novices. The difference between a program of strong and imaginative promise and a program potentially compromising our national interest will probably lie precisely in this area of the competence of those we send. We must ever keep in mind that it is much more important to assure quality than quantity, competence than numbers, in the filling of Peace Corps needs around the world. The speed with which we move cannot compare in importance to the direction in which we proceed. How best to assure the necessary competence is the burden of the several points of principle which follow.
NEED FOR DECENTRALIZED ADMINISTRATION OF THE CORPS
First, the President's emphasis that the Peace Corps program should be carried out as fully as possible through private institutions and organizations is warmly applauded by the majority of our institutions of higher education. This principle seems to us both politically and operationally sound; politically because such essentially private administration would minimize criticisms overseas that the Peace Corps is but the latest in the series of cold war devices, and operationally because we believe that centralized governmental administration would prove far less effective than utilization of experienced private agencies.
UTILIZATION OF COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES URGED
Second, there are, however, even more positive reasons for subscribing to the decentralized administration of the Peace Corps program. Convinced that the United States must assure not only high quality Peace Corps volunteers but also men and women adaptable to foreign culture, we believe that the best means of assuring these qualities is through placing the major responsibility for the selection, recruitment, and training in institutions of higher education. This country has a solid core of universities and colleges with extensive experience in educational assistance programs to other nations around the world. We believe this experience to be a proven resource and a prime asset to this Government in the development of the Peace Corps program.
AMERICAN COUNCIL ON EDUCATION'S CONCEPTION OF PROJECT
Third, as the committee may already know, the council's committee on the Peace Corps, chaired by President Gaylord P. Harnwell, University of Pennsylvania, has had some part in advising the responsible officers of the Peace Corps since its inception, as has President Arthur S. Adams of the American Council on Education, also. The council's Peace Corps committee has stressed from the outset a conception of project development which, briefly summarized, regards the essential elements in a given Peace Corps project overseas to be the following:
The initial determination to undertake a specific project in a specific underdeveloped country is essentially a political judgment. It should be a mutually agreed judgment between our Government and the potential host country government, and considered as the sine qua non of any Peace Corps project.
Once this determination has been made, the nature of the specific project should be determined with the active assistance of the academic community, since many of the basic judgments required are educational in nature and the resources needed to mount the projects are principally to be found in institutions of higher education. Ideally, the Peace Corps could secure optimum assistance at this stage of project development from an institution or institutions which would be potentially involved in implementing a given program.
Once the outlines of the project were agreed, responsibility for administration of the project should be given to an academic institution or a consortium of such institutions. “Responsibility” should consist in selection, recruitment, and training of the Peace Corps volunteers involved and evaluation of the project throughout its term. These specifics of administration would, of course, be mutually agreed between the institution and the Peace Corps, within the context of general Peace Corps agency standards and principles.
Fourth, the legal-fiscal relationship between the private agency and the Peace Corps agency s'ıould be kept as simple as possible con sistent with the responsibilities given to the institutions and the public obligations of the Peace Corps agency itself. The Peace Corps agency can profit materially, I believe, from the rather extensive experience in this particular which has been accumulated in existing programs of university-to-university cooperation overseas.
Finally, it should be reiterated that the significant opportunity for service presented in the concept of the Peace Corps appears to us to be dependent upon the efficiency and sophistication with which it is conducted. It is probably not too much to say that even a few failures in the conception of specific programs, the selection and training of individuals, or their supervision, could have the most serious consequences to the national interest of the United States. It is my belief that conduct of the program within the general context of the foregoing principles would most nearly assure the efficiency and sophistication required.
SUPPORT OF S. 2000
The bill now before this committee provides the indispensable legislative authorization for a continuing program. We believe that, within its provisions, the principles I have emphasized can be adhered to. We are encouraged further, in the light of the statements of the present Director of the Peace Corps, to hope that the continuing administration of the program will also accord with these principles.
The American Council on Education stands ready, as it has from the inception of the program, to lend any appropriate assistance to those in our Government charged with responsibility for the develop ment of this program. I should like to thank the committee once again, on the council's behalf, for this opportunity to comment on the Peace Corps program.
Senator SPARKMAN. Thank you, sir, for a very fine statement.
Next is Dr. C. N. Hostetter, Jr., Mennonite Central Committee, Akron, Pa. Come around, Dr. Hostetter. We are very glad to have you. Just proceed in your own way.
STATEMENT OF C. N. HOSTETTER, JR., CHAIRMAN, MENNONITE
CENTRAL COMMITTEE, AKRON, PA.
Mr. HOSTETTER. I am C. X. Hostetter, Jr., chairman of the Mennonite Central Committee, one of America's church-related relief agencies, organized in 1920. As one phase of our foreign relief and services program 10 years ago we began a pax men or peace team program-pax is Latin term for peace. In these 10 years 460 young men have serred 2- to 3-year terms in 26 foreign countries. ''heir work has been similar to that envisioned in the Peace Corps program.