More Information:
Blog Post number one got interesting responses. Andrew and I were surprised by the number of people who did not know what was going on. Therefore, let's go back to the beginning. It has been my dream for a long time to work in international development. Currently, at DevTech, I have had the opportunity to learn more about development and the US work abroad. I have been a contractor for US Agency for International Development for almost three years. As much as I have loved working with data and supporting AID, I really wanted to get into the agency. Beginning in August I will start orientation as a new foreign service officer Orientation is around 5 weeks. The last event of orientations is a "Flag Ceremony" where they announce where your first posting will be. After the announcement, I will most likely be doing 6-9 months of language training at FSI here in DC.

It is really important to us to keep all of friends and family in the loop so below is the answers to your first batch of questions as answered by one of us.

Susan asks us...How long is your commitment?

That is an interesting question. The foreign service is a career and life choice. There are postings back in the US if we decide we need home, and it isn't like the military. If you do not enjoy yourself, you can leave.

Shani asks us...(100 questions) Do you know when you head out yet? How long is it for?? Do you think you'll get a chance to pick your second country?
I think I addressed the when above. The short answer is..we don't know. Most tours are two years. Each location or posting will be two years. Hopefully the second posting will be off the bid process, where we rank available locations and get more involvement in the process. However, I feel at this point in USAID it will be more of a "where we are needed."

Phil asks us...And what defines a "Hazard Country", and why could you go to one but Andrew couldn't?
There are locations that due to political instability and/or security concerns, in some cases family members cannot go to post (unaccompanied tours). The reasons are of course safety but also insurance and liability issues. In the event of a crisis or an evacuation spouses and family could double the effors. At some point in a FSO officer's career you are expected to go to one of these posts.

Ashley asks Andrew...What do you do for a living? What kind of job will you look for?
This will really depend on the posting. Some countries have a greater need for American lawyers for others. Ideally, I can practice with a private firm, consult on rule of law, or do something like human rights work with a non-profit. There really are many possibilities, and right now, a couple years as a commercial fisherman is sounding good!

Shani also asks Andrew..Is Andrew thinking of looking for jobs at the embassy?
The short answer is yes. The long answer is that most spousal jobs are clerical and not really matched up with my skill set. When we find out our posting, we will see what kind of jobs are available in the embassy and go from there. Again, this will largely depend on the posting.

Erin asks Andrew....will Andrew be able to do work as a lawyer in whatever country you get assigned to, or will he need to find something else to do?

Maybe. I'm optimistic that there will be something related to law available in anyplace that we may live.

Jenna asks Whitney..What is your ideal posting?

Seriously, I have no preference. I would like Africa, since that's a dream of mine, but I am happy anywhere. Latin American would make getting home easier, but Asia would be amazing to travel in. Ok, that was the long winded, I don't know.

Jenna asks Andrew..What is your ideal posting?

My current favorites are Riga, Latvia; Kingston, Jamaica; Kiev, Ukraine; and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. For the purposes of this answer, I'm assuming that we will not be posted in a major international city like Rome, Toyko, or Cairo.


  1. I love bloggers who actually respond to their comments. You guys rock! And I look forward to continuing to read about your adventures.

  2. This is a great idea, I look forward to following .
    My question...When are you coming home?


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