05/15/2011 01:12 pm ET | Updated Jul 15, 2011

Peace Corps Enters Its 50th Year

As the U.S. Peace Corps celebrates its 50th anniversary, CNN reported on a new batch of recruits are headed out into the field.

Katie Pollak, a 22-year-old with a degree in human biology, is heading off to Senegal to help the Corps fight malaria. She told CNN:

"Professionally, this is going to be the best thing that I could do in terms of on the ground experience. Whether I go into a broad line of work or policy work... Personally, I think it's going to be the biggest challenge of my life, also being in an entirely new culture."

Since President John F. Kennedy initiated the Peace Corps in 1961, over 200,000 volunteers have served in 139 countries.