Where do you work?
University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dept. of Soil Science
When did you serve in the Peace Corps?
Where did you serve (which country/countries)?
Republic of Zambia
What were your main responsibilities as a volunteer?
Agriculture and nutrition; Peace Corps trainer; Provincial coordinator
Is there a specific person (or persons) who made a strong impression on you during that time?
Alice Nzaila — Incredibly hard-working woman in my village who genuinely cared about people in need.
What was one of the most memorable moments you had as a volunteer?
Giving a one-hour presentation followed by a question-and-answer session, all in KiKaonde.
In what ways did your Peace Corps experience affect your life and/or career decisions?
The Peace Corps gave me the opportunity to meet, live, and work with the kindest people in the world. As a result of being a volunteer and PC staff worker, I have undertaken research (again in Zambia) involving rural agriculture practices on the Tonga Plateau.
In what ways did your U-M education, both inside and outside the classroom, prepare you for your Peace Corps experience?
U-M taught me how to work hard and be diligent in that work; in the Peace Corps you have to work hard for your village and be diligent with them.
What advice would you give to others who are contemplating going into the Peace Corps?
People worry about "missing" two years. Trust me, everyone else is missing out on the experiences you will have.
What is the value gained from the Peace Corps experience?
Without all the distractions of the modern world, you remember (or learn) what it is to be a true, caring, social being. I learned a great deal of patience. I also learned what is worth worrying about, and what things are distractions.
What lessons did you learn in the Peace Corps that you carry with you today?
Patience in all things; also that love/belief, if deep enough, can move mountains.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
One Zambia, One Nation! (& Go Blue!)