Anyone experience less than four months?
I've been on medical hold (for pre-clearance) and just received medical pre-clearance last Friday which I apparently don't even need anymore because of the new application system? I was really hoping I wouldn't have to wait until next year to leave. I've been waiting a year already.
The 4 months thing is an internal mandate in Peace Corps. That is their deadline to invite people because of the final legal and medical clearance which happens AFTER the invitation (yes, there are even MORE medical things to do), as well as things like passport and visa applications. Back when I applied (2009-2010) you had to do EVERYTHING before you got invited...without knowing if you'd be invited or not. The issue with getting invited to a 2014 program at this point is the lack of programs available. August, September, and October programs have deadlines which have passed, which means they are likely full (unless invitees decide not to go last minute). November and December each have only ONE program departing. I think the deadline for the November program might have passed already, too, leaving just the December program.
Then there's the complication of your medical pre-clearance. Yes, you do still need it if you applied and were nominated prior to June 1. This is actually not a disadvantage as it will make you more likely to receive final medical clearance to your country of invite. Those who won't do medical until AFTER their invitation might
find that they can't get final medical clearance in time for their departure (this is a guess, not a certainty).
Anyway, your medical pre-clearance generates an "approved" list of countries to which you can be invited as they are the ones who can support your medical needs. So Placement will have to figure out which countries on your approved list have programs which match your qualifications and preferences.
In the old system, waiting a year wasn't actually that uncommon. A person in my group was in the process for 2 years due to medical issues (again because everything had to be finalized before your invite). The new process tries to dramatically cut down that time, but no one has been invited in the whole new process that went live July 1, so we'll have to wait and see.