From Morehouse to Peace Corps

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By Peter Wilborn
Dec. 30, 2019

Once I found out about Peace Corps, every fiber of my being told me that this was the perfect way to not only start a life of global public service, but also one where I could use my skills of leadership, diplomacy and management in an unconventional way. I could be the change I want to see in the world.

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My decision to enter Morehouse College was one driven by a desire to better myself so that I could one day, better the world around me. Starting my undergraduate experience as a 17 year old freshman, I had absolutely no idea what that meant in the context of my own personal goals, but I was able to recognize the affect the school had on men like my father, other men in my family, and mentors throughout the years.

Morehouse College is the only all-male, historically black institution built specifically for the education of young men in both academics and the survival skills necessary to progress in the world – simply put, there is no place like it. Throughout my matriculation, I was able to slowly mold and create my own opinions, views, and, most importantly, purpose.

As time progressed, I made the decision to create a career in international service, with the goal of becoming a public servant. I decided to pursue global politics, making sure that I not only understood the world I was seeking to change, but knowing what my role was as well. I wanted to focus on ways to make sure I could serve my local, national and international community as holistically as possible.

Once I found out about Peace Corps, every fiber of my being told me that this was the perfect way to not only start a life of global public service, but also where I could use my skills of leadership, diplomacy and management in an unconventional way; I could be the change I want to see. This was also poignant in my school’s long standing relationship with the Peace Corps and why I chose Comoros as my country of service.

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The first day of the rest of my life finally came. Graduation Day. On May 19, 2019, my class’ commencement speaker Dr. Robert F. Smith gave us the financial opportunity many people in my generation and even past generations, would never have ever dreamed of – a clean slate. A chance to continue in our dreams to make our community and field better without the burden of thousands of dollars attached to so many of our names, including my own. This set the precedent for our class to not just make gains with the gift we have been given, but also find ways to “pay it forward” to the present and future of Morehouse and the community as a whole.

For me, my Peace Corps service took on a new level of meaning and importance. I am not only representing Morehouse College on an international stage, but also giving back in a very direct and important manner. None of this was planned, but it worked out and I’m glad it did. Dr. Smith’s donation has allowed me to fully immerse myself into the experience and work that the Peace Corps demands, and I am looking forward to serving as a future public servant in international policy.

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