Evaluating the Long-term Impacts of AmeriCorps Service on Participants

by Diana Epstein

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Since 1993, over 500,000 people have served in AmeriCorps national service programs. This dissertation evaluates the long-term impacts of AmeriCorps service on participants, particularly in the areas of civic engagement, future volunteerism, appreciation of diversity, and a number of other job and life skills. It fills a gap by using both quantitative and qualitative methods to help illuminate some of the ways that program characteristics play a mediating role on the participants' outcomes.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One

    Background and Policy Relevance

  • Chapter Two

    Review of the Literature

  • Chapter Three


  • Chapter Four

    Analysis and Findings

  • Chapter Five

    Longitudinal Study Design

  • Chapter Six


  • Chapter Seven


  • Chapter Eight

    Implications for Program Design

  • Chapter Nine

    Suggestions for Future Research

  • Appendix A

    Alumni interview protocol

  • Appendix B

    Details of interview participants

  • Appendix C

    Alumni interview codebook

  • Appendix D

    Survey items used in constructing outcomes

  • Appendix E

    Quantitative analysis results

Research conducted by

This document was submitted as a dissertation in August 2009 in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the doctoral degree in public policy analysis at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. The faculty committee that supervised and approved the dissertation consisted of John Graham (Chair), Francisco Martorell, James Perry, and Susan Marquis.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Dissertation series. Pardee RAND dissertations are produced by graduate fellows of the Pardee RAND Graduate School, the world's leading producer of Ph.D.'s in policy analysis. The dissertations are supervised, reviewed, and approved by a Pardee RAND faculty committee overseeing each dissertation.

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