Pickering Foreign Affairs | About Foreign Service

About the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State

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About the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State

The mission of a U.S. diplomat in the Foreign Service is to promote peace, support prosperity, and protect American citizens while advancing the interests of the U.S. abroad.


If you’re passionate about public service and want to represent the U.S. around the world, a challenging and rewarding career is waiting for you. The opportunity to work and experience cultures, customs and people of different nations is truly a career unlike any other.


The work you’ll do will have an impact on the world. You will be asked to serve at one of any of the more than 270 embassies, consulates and other diplomatic missions in The Americas, Africa, Europe and Eurasia, East Asia and Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, and South Asia. Some of these posts are in difficult and even dangerous environments, but working in them affords great challenges and rewards.


Explore a career in the Foreign Service and start your journey with the Department today. Start by looking at where we work, or taking the quiz to find out if the Foreign Service is right for you, or what career track is the best fit. Learn more by visiting the U.S. Department of State's website.



Fellow Snapshots

Mario LamarMario Lamar | 2016 Fellow

Undergraduate University: Morehouse College

Graduate University: Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS)


Mario Teron Lamar is from Maywood, Il. He completed his studies from Morehouse College with a major in international studies and minor in Spanish. While at Morehouse College, he was selected as an Oprah Winfrey South Africa Leadership Fellow. As a fellow, he studied the history and culture of South Africa and Zimbabwe as well as the racial divides in those countries. That experience enabled him to witness firsthand the impact of U.S. foreign policy and foreign aid program in southern Africa through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). In 2015, he interned at the Department of State in the Bureau of Public Affairs.


Prior to completing his undergraduate degree, Mario served in the U.S. Navy for four years as a Logistics Specialist. After being honorably discharged from the Navy, he relocated to Medellín, Colombia for six months where he learned Spanish at La Universidad de Bolivariana and volunteered as an English teacher.


Mario plans to study Public Administration and Human Security at Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. He is fluent in Spanish.


Alithea McFarlaneAlithea McFarlane | 2016 Fellow

Undergraduate University: Bowdoin College

Graduate University: University of California – Berkeley


Alithea McFarlane is from Houston, TX. At Bowdoin College, she majored in Religion and minored in Japanese. While at Bowdoin, Alithea participated as a delegate in the 64th Japan America Student Conference, interned at a human rights NGO (called UJAS) in India, and studied abroad in a language intensive program in Japan. After graduation, she served with AmeriCorps NCCC FEMA Corps and worked as a Foundation Fellow with the Episcopal Health Foundation in Houston, Texas.


Her hobbies include reading, hiking, and volunteering as a docent with the Architecture Center of Houston.