February 24, 2003: Headlines: COS - St. Lucia: Blog: Internet: PCVs in the Field - St. Lucia: Personal Web Site: Caroline's Caribbean Adventure in the Peace Corps

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Saint Lucia: Peace Corps Saint Lucia : The Peace Corps in Saint Lucia: February 24, 2003: Headlines: COS - St. Lucia: Blog: Internet: PCVs in the Field - St. Lucia: Personal Web Site: Caroline's Caribbean Adventure in the Peace Corps

By Admin1 (admin) (pool-151-196-239-147.balt.east.verizon.net - on Friday, August 27, 2004 - 6:12 pm: Edit Post

Caroline's Caribbean Adventure in the Peace Corps

Caroline's Caribbean Adventure in the Peace Corps

Caroline's Caribbean Adventure

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Welcome to Caroline's Caribbean Adventure, documenting experiences serving in the U.S. Peace Corps on the island of St. Lucia in the Eastern Caribbean. I arrived on St. Lucia July 26, 2002, and was sworn in September 8, 2002.
I am living in Castries, the largest city on the island, and I'm working for the National Skills Development Center, a St. Lucian government agency which provides job training to at-risk young people. We offer training in a number of trades--unglamorous but necessary things like heavy equipment maintenance and fish processing and also tourist trade-oriented skills like floral arrangement, massage therapy and pastry preparation.
One of my assignments is to oversee a rehabilitation of NSDC satellite facilities. The Choiseul Arts and Crafts Center is one of the satellites, and is my current project. I'm hoping to help the Crafts Center become profitable as a producer of high quality basketry and carvings.
I am also teaching beginning swimming to little kids.
In my free time, I've been exploring St. Lucia, enjoying hiking amidst the gorgeous scenery, and also testing out the numerous beaches.

Here's a little about me and what brought me to this place in my life:

I was born Nov. 16, 1978 in Dayton, OH to Kathie and Lyle Boucher. I grew up in Cincinnati, OH with my brother, Will, 3 years younger. From a young age, I was interested in Geography, and jumped at the opportunity to study Spanish early, as an 8th grader. Just before my 8th grade year, in 1992, my family moved to Mukwonago, Wisconsin, in the Milwaukee area.

I went to Catholic Memorial High School in Waukesha, Wisconsin, from 1993-1997. Having begun my Spanish studies early, I was able to test into a more advanced section, and very much enjoyed being one of the youngest kids in the class.

In the fall of 1997, I started at UW-Madison. My initial intention was to study International Business with a Spanish emphasis (double majoring in International Business and Spanish). After various changes, I graduated in December, 2001 with degrees in Spanish and Latin American studies. Although I don't officially hold a business degree, I did take a number of business and economics classes, and also have worked in accounting and banking.

With no overly-bright job prospects on the horizon, I looked into graduate school. It would buy me two more years to think about what I would like my career to be, and with a master's, I would be that much further ahead. The only problem was that I wasn't certain what I wanted to study on the graduate level. Studying for a master's in Spanish would only put me closer to becoming a professor of Spanish, where my career options would be teaching and/or writing. Not necessarily what I wanted to do. Another thought was to study applied economics. As opposed to studying graphs and principles and numbers in standard economics, applied economics looks at the theories of economics through the lens of real-world economic problems. That would put me in line for a career possibly as a policy advisor in the government. I think that's really interesting. A third thought that came about a little later was to go to law school. I haven't looked into this as thoroughly, but I think it has possibilities. I know for sure that I wouldn't go into the ever-popularized trial law.

Anyways. With things a bit uncertain, in the summer of 2001, I began looking into different types of volunteer- and work-abroad programs. Initially, the Peace Corps was kind of scary because of the two-year commitment. But I began the application process, thinking that I would have it as a backup if I was unable to find a job when I graduated. The job search didn't go well, but I sort of forgot about the Peace Corps applications. In February, I was working as a bank teller while I looked for something more permanent. One day, out of nowhere, a package arrived from the Peace Corps with information and an assignment for me. It was the perfect thing at the perfect time. Not only did it sound good because of the sunny location, but I was having no luck with jobs.

... So here I am!

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: Personal Web Site

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - St. Lucia; Blog; Internet; PCVs in the Field - St. Lucia



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