The Foreign Service Journal, December 2019

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | DECEMBER 2019 75 Mariette A. Boutros currently works at the Department of Homeland Security in Los Angeles. She holds a B.A. from the University of Cali- fornia, San Diego, in political science and international economics. O n Nov. 14, 2018, I arrived in Washing- ton, D.C., with 27 other students for the 2018 Cox-State Department Diplomacy Fellowship, a pilot program of the Una Chapman Cox Foundation in partnership with the Department of State and the CloseUp Foundation aimed at recruiting the best and brightest into the U.S. Foreign Service. I was the last one to arrive and hadn’t met anyone in the room, but I had lots of questions about the Foreign Service, a career I had been considering since the age of 12. Born in Lebanon, I immigrated to the United States with my family in EDUCATION SUPPLEMENT We were, in effect, invited into a day in the life of a member of the U.S. Foreign Service. Personalized Exposure We walked through the main State Department building, took part in a podcast during the American Diplomat session, negotiated real-world issues dur- ing a U.S. Diplomacy Center simulation, networked with FSOs during breakout 2003. During a visit to relatives in Lebanon in 2006, the July war with Israel erupted, and I was evacuated from the country by U.S. Marines aboard the USS Nashville . Overnight, my passion for international affairs and diplomacy was born. Now here I was, more than a decade later, chosen to participate in this all- expenses-paid, four-day, one-of-a-kind experience that openedmy eyes to the unique career and lifestyle of a diplomat. A unique “immersion” program offers students insight into a career in diplomacy. BY MAR I ETTE A . BOUTROS Demystifying & Discovering the U.S. Foreign Service Participants in the 2018 Cox-State Department Diplomacy Fellowship pilot program pose for a group photo. UNACHAPMANCOXFOUNDATION