Paul Jurmo

Paul Jurmo is currently with the US Peace Corps. His areas of interest include basic skills education for adults, out-of-school youth, and children, sector-based career pathway systems (especially for green jobs), customizing services to learner populations, leadership development and community service.


In 2014, while serving as Country Representative and Director of Programming and Training for the US Peace Corps in Tonga, he wrote:


Our Peace Corps post had a busy year. We weathered a cyclone in January. We're helping the Ministry of Education to implement a new curriculum. The 26 Volunteers also teach health and environmental topics, help parents support their children's education, and strengthen the use of reading materials and technology in the schools.


[Wife] Olga works at the local clinic, helping patients deal with a range of health issues... She also occasionally fills in for the Peace Corps doctor.


Paul also noted that “Oddly enough, Mike Basile worked for Peace Corps in Tonga years ago, just before we got to know him at CIE.”


Paul served as a consultant for World Education in 2012, which allowed him to make a series of visits to Zimbabwe. “I'm providing technical support to the NFE component they've added to their Bantwana project for orphans and vulnerable children there," he said, "[It's] very interesting work, which allows me to draw on similar projects I've done in the U.S.”


From 2005 to 2010, Paul was Dean of Economic Development and Continuing Education at Union County College, a community college in northern New Jersey. He designed and led a number of innovative projects related to career pathways in various industries, integration of educational technologies into basic skills curricula, use of Equipped for the Future standards and piloting of a prisoner re-entry initiative. He also led a team that created a career exploration and work readiness program for out-of-school youth.


After CIE, Paul worked in various roles in adult literacy, adult education and workplace education, including teaching at New York University and consulting for the NYC Transport Workers’ Union, New York Immigrant Coalition, and Rutgers University’s Center for Workforce Development. He also served on the board of the New Jersey Association for Lifelong Learning and volunteered with the Grassroots Literacy Coalition in NYC.


He reflected in 2010:

[In] my 25 years or so in US adult literacy and workforce development programs, the reality is that most of the planning, intercultural sensitivity, customization, political navigation... that I've had to deal with every day… are very similar to the challenges I've faced in my international work.


Paul also worked for 5 years in The Gambia doing literacy and numeracy programs, three years as a Peace Corps Volunteer and two years working for a USAID-funded NGO which specialized in education for farmer cooperatives. He wrote the CIE publication Dialogue Is Not a Chaste Event based on the NGO experience. [01/17]






Entrance Year: 
Graduation Year: 
5-year span: 
CIE Graduate