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Change the World: Join the Foreign Service

Read about how the State Department is encouraging Americans to make a difference abroad.

Note: This post was originally published on the Department of State blog. To see the original post, please click here.

As a young woman growing up in Louisiana, a career in the Foreign Service was never really on my list of life dreams -- but all that changed, beginning with graduate school and a research project in Africa that opened my eyes to the possibilities of diplomatic life.

Since joining the Department of State 31 years ago, I have lived and worked on four continents, traveling the world from Afghanistan to South Africa. I have witnessed the horror of genocide in Rwanda; I've celebrated the joy of people coming out of 15 years of war to elect the first woman president in Africa. I've never regretted those first steps out of my comfort zone and into the world of diplomacy.

I've been the face of America abroad, and I've been blessed with the opportunity to make a difference in people's lives and to represent my nation. The State Department needs the energy and passion of Americans who want a career that matters.

And that's why we've made this video.

We want to highlight and share with you some of the faces and stories of the amazing people who have made their dreams to do good in the world a reality through their career in the Foreign Service.

I hope you will watch it and think about this unique career and lifestyle. You can see the full film by visiting, where you'll be able to delve much deeper into the various types of diplomatic careers and learn about the steps you can take to pursue this path.

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Linda Thomas-Greenfield is the Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Human Resources. Prior to this , she served as Ambassador for the Republic of Liberia from 2008-2012.