March 20, 2003: Headlines: COS - Georgia: Recruitment: The Arbiter: Student Body President Nate Peterson departing for Georgia

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Georgia: Peace Corps Georgia : The Peace Corps in Georgia: March 20, 2003: Headlines: COS - Georgia: Recruitment: The Arbiter: Student Body President Nate Peterson departing for Georgia

By Admin1 (admin) ( - on Thursday, August 26, 2004 - 5:24 pm: Edit Post

Student Body President Nate Peterson departing for Georgia

Student Body President Nate Peterson departing for Georgia

Former student leader to work near Baghdad

Brandon Fiala, The Arbiter
March 20, 2003

Former ASBSU President Nate Peterson is departing Monday for a country near the epicenter of the war on Iraq.

Peterson visited campus this week to say goodbye to the friends and professors who helped shape his undergraduate experience.

Peterson is leaving for the country Georgia, a former republic of the Soviet Union on the Black Sea between Turkey and Russia.

Peterson, serving through the Peace Corps, will teach English and work with community groups to develop problem-solving skills. Peterson will spend three months learning Georgian and 24 months teaching.

Sept. 11 and the war on terrorism continue to play a role, Peterson said.

“Following 9-11, I decided that now is the time for service,” he said.

Peterson is headed for a country involved in the invasion of Iraq.

“As circumstances with the current war on terror and subsequent war on Iraq have unfolded, Georgia, which is in closer proximity to Baghdad than we are to Seattle, is right in the middle of the current international crisis.”

Peterson said he will undergo Peace Corps training that addresses safety issues, but will rely on basic measures.

“I will just try and blend in with the people, and not call attention to myself,” he said.

Peterson graduated from Boise State last year with a bachelor’s degree in economics. Since graduation, he has been working for various state Democratic candidates.

Peterson was student body president for two years and the driving force behind one of the most controversial and visible student government administrations.

During his presidency, Peterson initiated a petition drive calling for President Charles Ruch’s resignation, graded administrative performance with a student survey and rallied for education funding after the budget crisis.

“Nate Peterson had one of the most highly visible presidencies of any student body leader that I have worked with on campus,” said Peg Blake, vice president of student affairs.

“And I believe his visibility also extended off campus into a number of other venues.”

Blake said she and Peterson didn’t always get along, although they communicated better during his first year.

“As the community is aware, we had more difficulty communicating during his second year,” Blake said.

Blake said Peterson was less effective advocating for students his second year because he was more confrontational.

“When you lead in a confrontational style you end up shutting down some lines of communication that can be very helpful,” Blake said.

However, Peterson said his leadership style was necessary given the incompetence of certain administrators.

“What some people call confrontational, I call meeting my duty and obligation to the 17,000 students at BSU to represent their interests to the best of my ability,” Peterson has said.

“Representation entails confrontation when in the course of issues and events affecting students, you stand up for student rights, or allow them to be tread upon.”

Peterson said once he finishes Peace Corps, he wants to pursue a law degree or Ph.D. in economics or political economy.

When this story was prepared, here was the front page of PCOL magazine:

This Month's Issue: August 2004 This Month's Issue: August 2004
Teresa Heinz Kerry celebrates the Peace Corps Volunteer as one of the best faces America has ever projected in a speech to the Democratic Convention. The National Review disagreed and said that Heinz's celebration of the PCV was "truly offensive." What's your opinion and who can come up with the funniest caption for our Current Events Funny?

Exclusive: Director Vasquez speaks out in an op-ed published exclusively on the web by Peace Corps Online saying the Dayton Daily News' portrayal of Peace Corps "doesn't jibe with facts."

In other news, the NPCA makes the case for improving governance and explains the challenges facing the organization, RPCV Bob Shaconis says Peace Corps has been a "sacred cow", RPCV Shaun McNally picks up support for his Aug 10 primary and has a plan to win in Connecticut, and the movie "Open Water" based on the negligent deaths of two RPCVs in Australia opens August 6. Op-ed's by RPCVs: Cops of the World is not a good goal and Peace Corps must emphasize community development.

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Story Source: The Arbiter

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Georgia; Recruitment



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