After receiving an American Culture and Difference minor, I continued my studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies as a Master of Public Administration (MPA) candidate concentrating in International Management and Mandarin Chinese. The analytical skills taught in all ACD courses enabled me to excel at graduate-level research.
My understanding of American history, folklore, and myth-narratives, moreover, proved indispensible when I served as a Peace Corps volunteer promoting mutual understanding in Malawi. The inter-personal and cross-cultural communication skills taught in American Culture and Difference also came in handy when advising Malawian social change organizations engaged in HIV impact mitigation.
As a recently returned Peace Corps volunteer, I trust that the critical thinking and writing skills I honed as an American Culture and Difference minor will enable me to satisfy the Monterey Institute’s graduation portfolio requirements. Upon obtaining my MPA, I intend to use the skills taught in ACD and my knowledge of Sino-African relations to help U.S. and Chinese institutions finance African development.
Riley Abbott, 2006
I find myself in Washington DC looking for continued work in International Development. I've just returned from a 27 month service with the Peace Corps in El Salvador. There I worked in Municipal Development and community organizing, increasing citizen participation and strengthening civil society groups as well as institutions. It was exhilarating work and I want to continue it.
My great education from St. Thomas and the American Cultural Studies program was in no small part helpful for me in my ability to do such things.