Jennifer Seely on serving in the Peace Corps in Côte d’Ivoire

April 11, 2021

A young woman volunteers for the Peace Corps straight out of college. The skills she develops there – speaking French, becoming resilient, learning the local customs – will pave the way for her career as an expert in African democracy and development.

It was the Peace Corps that moved me in the direction of French-speaking Africa. (Jennifer, 33:15)


Jennifer Seely is an Associate Professor of Politics at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana and mom of two.  She grew up in St. Louis, Missouri and joined the Peace Corps after college, spending two years in Côte d’Ivoire, followed by additional experience in the West Africa region including a Fulbright research grant in Benin and Togo.  She earned her PhD from Washington University in St. Louis with expertise in African democracy and development, and has authored two books, The Legacies of Transition Governments and the fourth edition of the Historical Dictionary of Togo, which is due out this month.

Jennifer Seely on serving in the Peace Corps in Côte d'Ivoire