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April Altamira '08 Begins Peace Corps Service in Guatemala

December 8, 2011

April Altamira, 32, of Baltimore, Md., has been accepted into the Peace Corps and will depart for Guatemala Jan. 4, 2012 to begin pre-service training as a community tourism  Peace Corps volunteer. Upon graduation from volunteer training in April, Altamira will work to facilitate the conservation and management of natural reserves, to train park guards and ecotourism associations, and to help develop regional networks and projects to market sustainable tourism.

Altamira said she has looked forward to the challenges that come with volunteering for the Peace Corps, as well as learning about new cultures and developing her language skills.

During the first three months of her service, Altamira will live with a host family in Guatemala to become fully immersed in the country’s language and culture. After acquiring the language and cultural skills necessary to assist her community, Altamira will be sworn into service and be assigned to a community in Guatemala, where she will live and work for two years with the local people.

Altamira is the daughter of Nicolas Altamira and a graduate of Floresville High School in Floresville, Texas. She attended Notre Dame of Maryland University in Baltimore, Md., where she earned a bachelor’s degree in biology in 2008. 

After completing her Peace Corps service, she said she planned to pursue graduate studies in ecology.

Altamira joins the 249 Maryland residents currently serving in the Peace Corps and more than 5,530 Maryland residents who have served in the Peace Corps since 1961.

About Peace Corps/Guatemala: More than 4,800 Peace Corps volunteers have served in Guatemala since the program was established in 1963. Currently, 245 volunteers serve in Guatemala. Volunteers work in the areas of health, youth development, environment and agriculture. Volunteers are trained and work in the following languages: Ixil, Kakchiquel, Mam, Q’anjob’al, Qe’qchí, Quiché, Spanish and Tzutuhil.

About the Peace Corps: President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps on March 1, 1961, by executive order. Throughout 2011, Peace Corps is commemorating 50 years of promoting peace and friendship around the world. Historically, more than 200,000 Americans have served with the Peace Corps to promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of 139 host countries. Today, 9,095 volunteers are working with local communities in 75 host countries. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment. Visit www.peacecorps.gov for more information.