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Spotlight on our Alumni: A Journey of Growth, Gratitude, and Global Impact

Kourosh Salamati (`23) shares his commitment to service through the Peace Corps and the impact of the Caldwell Fellows Program.

Kourosh ('23) celebrating his graduation in Wolf Plaza.

In the heart of Albania, Kourosh Salamati, a recent graduate of the Caldwell Fellows Program (Class of 2023), has embarked on a transformative service journey through the Peace Corps. In this interview, Kourosh shares his experiences, reflections, and the profound impact that committing to a two-year service experience with the Peace Corps has on his personal and professional growth.

Kourosh envisions a future practicing medicine, aspiring to attend medical school after completing his service term in Albania. His commitment to service is deeply rooted in the values instilled by the Caldwell Fellows Program, which equipped him with the skills to be an authentic and effective leader.

Kourosh’s decision to commit to a service year was greatly influenced by his participation in the Caldwell Fellows Program. The program taught him valuable leadership skills and inspired him to implement what he learned meaningfully. The Peace Corps, with its two-year commitment and focus on constructive service, emerged as the perfect fit for Kourosh’s aspirations.

The Caldwell Fellows program gave me the opportunity to learn how to be an authentic and effective leader and supported me through my college journey, and I thought it only fair to implement what I had learned in the program to serve others; the Peace Corps seemed like the perfect fit.

Kourosh being inducted into his Peace Corps Service team.

Unexpectedly, the door to medical school did not open for Kourosh immediately after graduation, and in hindsight, he acknowledges the serendipity of this circumstance. His commitment to two years of service has become a source of immense learning, allowing him to discover more about himself, Albania, and the privileges he took for granted in the United States.

Kourosh expresses his desire to cultivate gratitude for the unknown and the challenges faced by those navigating unfamiliar situations. Teaching health topics in a new language and culture has given him a unique perspective, fostering empathy that he believes will make him a better future healthcare professional.

His experience in the Caldwell Fellows Program was a cornerstone in Kourosh’s decision to embark on a service experience. The confidence and comfort gained from serving in various capacities within the program played a pivotal role in preparing him for this international service journey.

Caldwell Fellows is THE reason for me embarking on this experience. Having had the opportunity to serve in small and large capacities while in the program was the reason for feeling confident and comfortable to partake in this journey.

Kourosh and a group of fellow Peace Corps volunteers.

Kourosh envisions seamlessly integrating his service experience with his future medical career. Teaching health topics to students now is seen as a preparation for educating future patients. His current journey of navigating language, culture, and relationships will enable him to better understand and empathize with patients facing confusion and uncertainty.

To students considering a post-graduation service commitment, Kourosh offers heartfelt advice. He encourages them to seize the opportunity immediately after college, leveraging their fresh minds, energy, and time. Kourosh emphasizes the importance of embracing discomfort, as it is through challenges that true personal growth occurs. The experience, he believes, will open minds to diverse perspectives and cultivate gratitude for the often-overlooked aspects of life.

Kourosh’s journey exemplifies the profound impact of service on personal and professional development. From the Caldwell Fellows Program to the Peace Corps, his story inspires others to embrace the transformative power of service, fostering growth, gratitude, and a global perspective. As Kourosh continues to serve and learn in Albania, his narrative becomes a beacon for those considering the path of service after graduation.

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