Meeting current and former volunteers

With every adventure comes at least one “Small World” experience. I just didn’t expect to find it so quickly with the Peace Corps. But so far, I’ve had two.

The first Small World experience happened during my decision-making process in regards to accepting the Peace Corps’ invitiation for me to join. Upon receiving the initiation, I got in contact with a college sweetheart of mine, Tracy-Lynn Barr. Tracy-Lynn served in Africa with the Peace Corps soon after college and was a wonderful resource in helping me determine if the Peace Corps will be right for me. And during our discussions, she realized that she knew my Peace Corps placement officer, for they served together in Africa. I have since put them in touch with each other.

A more amazing story happened to Russell Starck, a Peace Corps volunteer who will be arriving to Guyana with me in June. Not to spoil the surprise, I’ll let Russ share his story in his own words.

—–Original Message—–
From: Russell Starck [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: Thursday, April 04, 2002 12:52 PM
To: [email protected]
Subject: Re: FW: FW: PC Update: Other PCV Life


Hello, its great to hear from someone entering the same adventure! I was very impressed by your web site! It seems we have very similar interests. I majored in Speech Communication & Business Administration in college. I am an avid amateur photographer, and an outdoor buff. I’m 32 so, I relate to your age comments very well!

However, I am much less traveled. I have traveled through approximately 40 of the US states, but have never been outside of the US. Unless you count a quick lunch in Quebec while traveling for work a few years back.

I haven’t heard from any other volunteers leaving with our group. I will be in the IT program as well. I got connected with Amy (Myers) purely by happenstance. I went to have my eyeglasses repaired and began speaking to the woman working on my glasses.

By chance, that woman was Amy’s mother and we managed to talk about the Peace Corps. And, in turn, I found out her daughter was currently serving in the country I am about to serve in. Through Amy, I have recently been in touch with Pam, Ryan, and yourself. I attempted to contact Joanne, the other current IT volunteer but have not gotten through?

Feel free to contact me anytime. I would guess we have many of the same questions about packing and the whole prep process. Take care, nice to meet you!