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The US Foreign Service: Representing America Abroad

Program Number: 8164RJ
Start and End Dates:
2/2/2014 - 2/7/2014; 2/22/2015 - 2/27/2015;
Duration: 5 nights
Location: St. Petersburg, Florida
Price starting at: $668.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Political Science; History & Culture
Meals: 15; 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Low Fat; Low Salt; Vegetarian; Gluten Free    

How is the United States represented abroad by its diplomats? Find out from the diplomats themselves! Accept this rare invitation to go behind doors that are usually closed to the public as you meet retired Foreign Service Officers and discuss the intriguing challenges they faced in pursuing American foreign policy objectives. Learn how our diplomats cooperate with the military in the international arena and communicate with citizens in other countries through “public diplomacy.”




Highlights

• Retired Foreign Service Officers take you inside the daily life they lived during their time in foreign countries.
• Examine a wide variety of issues involving America’s friends and adversaries around the world, focusing on current and traditional hot spots.
• Enjoy some fascinating "Tales of the Foreign Service" from a career diplomat with lots to share.



Activity Particulars

Minimal walking and standing.




Date Specific Information

2-2-2014, 2-22-2015

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Coordinated by Eckerd College.




St. Petersburg (Florida)

Known as the “Sunshine City” with an average of 361 sunny days per year, “St. Pete” has 234 miles of shoreline and boasts 125 city parks, as well as one of America’s top-ranked beaches and the largest municipal arena in the southeast.



Accommodations
Waterfront hotel on Tampa Bay with two swimming pools, private beach, tennis and shuffleboard, bicycle rentals, and fitness center.
Meals and Lodgings
   Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove
  St. Petersburg, FL 5 nights
 Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove
Type: Hotel
  Description: With two pools and private beach, this full service 18-acre tropical resort is located directly on Tampa Bay. Convenient to nearby Gulf beaches and area attractions and all there is to do in St. Pete and the Tampa Bay area.
  Contact info: 6800 Sunshine Skyway Lane
St. Petersburg, FL 33711 USA
phone: 727-867-1151
web: http://www.marinacoveresort.com
  Room amenities: Clock radio; coffee maker; free local phone calls' hair dryer; microwave (on request); refrigerator; 2nd floor rooms have a balcony
  Facility amenities: Arcade and game room; ATM; bar and lounge; fitness center; gift shop; wireless internet access in public areas; laundry facilities; private beach; hot tub; 2 outdoor swimming pools; shuffleboard, tennis and volleyball courts.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: call for prices Call the hotel directly at 727-867-1151 for prices.
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: call for prices Call the hotel directly at 727-867-1151 for prices.
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Approximately 5pm. You will be staying at Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove that night.
  End of Program:
1:00pm You will be staying at Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
  Parking availability:
On-site parking is free and available in proximity to the accommodations.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  St. Petersburg, FL
  Nearest city or town:  Tampa/Clearwater
  Nearest highway: I-275
  Nearest airport:  Tampa International Airport and St. Petersburg/Clearwater International Airport
  From End of Program
  Location: St. Petersburg, FL
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

To/From Magnuson Hotel

 

To Train Station

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Amtrak
phone: 813-221-7600
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Call for current rates
Prices are subject to change.

   

5251 110th Avenue North Pinellas Park Square, Suite 101 Clearwater, FL 33760 Taxi: Yellow:813-253-0121 United:813-253-2424

 

To/From Magnuson Hotel

 

To Bus Terminal

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Greyhound Lines
phone: 727-898-1496

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Call for current rates
Prices are subject to change.

   

To/From Magnuson Hotel 727-8981496 To/From Greyhound Lines-7 Miles (For Greyhound Only) Greyhound Lines 180 9th Street North St. Petersburg, Fl 33705 Taxi: United:727-535-0000 Clearwater Yellow:727-799-2222

 

Tampa International Airport & St. Petersburg/Clearwater Airport

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Car Rental
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Call for Current Rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

20 to 30 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

25 miles

   

Tampa Airport Car Rental Avis: 800-831-2847 Budget: 800-527-0700 Dollar: 800-800-4000 Hertz: 800-736-8222 Thrifty: 800-847-4389 St. Petersburg/Clearwater Airport Alamo: 727-530-5491 Avis: 727-530-5491 Budget: 727-535-5263 Dollar: 727-531-3557 Enterprise: 727-524-1239 Hertz: 727-531-3774

 

Tampa International Airport & St. Petersburg/Clearwater International Airport

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Supershuttle
phone: 800-258-3826

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Call for current rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

20 minutes to 1/2 hour 

 

Distance:

 

25 miles

   

Website: www.supershuttle.com Reservations are recommended but not required. Travel from airport to the campus is very convenient - all interstate.

 
Driving Directions
  From North to Magnuson Hotel I-4 or I-75 south, merging onto I-275 (St. Petersburg). You will travel approximately 20 miles, all the way through Tampa, across Tampa Bay and past the downtown St. Petersburg exits. Take I-275 south to exit 16. Turn left at the stop. Turn right on Sunshine Skyway Lane. The Magnuson Hotel will be on your left.
  From South to Magnuson Hotel I-75 north to I-275. Cross the Sunshine Skyway Bridge ($1.25 toll). Take Exit 16 right onto Sunshine Skyway Lane. The Magnuson Hotel will be on your right.
  From St. Petersburg Clearwater Airport to Magnuson Hotel Turn left onto Roosevelt Blvd. (686) as you exit the airport. Follow to Ulmerton Road.Take I-275 south to exit 16. Turn left at the stop. Turn right on Sunshine Skyway Lane. The Magnuson Hotel will be on your left.
  From Tampa International Airport to Magnuson Hotel I-275 south toward St. Petersburg. You will travel approximately 20 miles, all the way through Tampa, across Tampa Bay and past the downtown St. Petersburg exits. Take I-275 south to exit 16. Turn left at the stop. Turn right on Sunshine Skyway Lane. The Magnuson Hotel will be on your left.
Elevation Note: Sea Level.

The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival/Welcome/Orientation
(Sunday, February 2)
   
 Afternoon: CHECK IN: From 3:00 pm at the Magnuson Hotel front desk. REGISTRATION: After you have your room assignment, you will be directed to the meeting room to register with the program staff and pick up your arrival packet containing the up-to-date schedule that we will review during orientation in the evening. PLEASE BE AWARE THAT PROGRAM ACTIVITIES AND SCHEDULED TIMES COULD CHANGE DUE TO UNFORESEEN CIRCUMSTANCES. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding! ORIENTATION: 5:00 pm. Meet and greet everyone in an introductory get-acquainted session. We'll then review the updated schedule and any changes, discuss responsibilities, safety guidelines, emergency procedures and answer any questions you may have.
 Dinner: Hotel Dining Room
 Evening: The evening is yours to begin to know your fellow participants, walk around the hotel, unpack or relax.
   
Accommodations: Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Introduction To The Foreign Service / Ambassador in a Changing World/Foreign Policy Dilemmas /Tai Chi with Professor Hong Gu
(Monday, February 3)
   
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel with at least one hot item. Assorted fruit, juice, coffee and tea.
 Morning: Wayne Griffith will begin the morning with a general overview/introduction to the Foreign Service. Wayne is a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, with a 30-year career with the Department of State. He was a career member of the Foreign Service from 1973 to 1988, and the Senior Foreign Service from 1988 to 2002.  During his diplomatic career, Wayne served in Mexico (twice), Jerusalem, Nicaragua, Peru, Japan, Great Britain and Washington, retiring from his position as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in September 2002. Take a short refreshment break. During the second part of the morning, Wayne will regale you with his "Tales of the Foreign Service." Listen as he recounts anecdotes from his 30-year career with the Department of State. Perhaps you’ll hear about a 3:00 am surprise in North Korea; making small talk with Queen Elizabeth; being on the receiving end of a terrorist rocket; or, what it’s like to be catapulted off the deck of an aircraft carrier. You never know just what story Wayne might tell you. PLEASE NOTE THAT PLACEMENT OF CLASSES AND FIELD TRIPS ON THE SCHEDULE ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT PRIOR NOTICE.
 Lunch: Hotel Dining Room
 Afternoon: Your afternoon lecture with Ambassador Donald Leidel will take you to the Middle East as he discusses Foreign Policy Dilemmas. Ambassador Leidel spent 41 years in government service with the Central Intelligence Agency, the United States Air Force and the Department of State. He served in Austria, Germany, Argentina, Mexico, and Bahrain, where he was ambassador for 1983 to 1986 and in 1989. His other overseas experience included a study on racial attitudes in Africa based on visits to five African countries and post-retirement consultancies in Slovakia and Oman.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Eckerd College Continuing Education Dining Hall. The buffet at the campus dining hall includes hot entrees, side dishes, salad bar, soup, deli meats, bread, fresh fruit, desserts and beverages. Self-service format with trays.
 Evening: Take a break from your classes and enjoy a lesson in T'ai Chi with Eckerd College Professor Hong Gu.
   
Accommodations: Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Diplomatic-Military Cooperation /Living and Raising Children Overseas /Afternoon Excursion/ Tales of the Foreign Service
(Tuesday, February 4)
   
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel with at least one hot item. Assorted fruit, juice, coffee and tea.
 Morning: Begin the morning with Ed Fugit as he addresses the topic of Diplomatic-Military Cooperation overseas. Mr. Fugit is a retired Senior Foreign Service Officer whose 28-year career spanned the years of 1970 – 1998. His specialty is political work and politico-military relations. Mr. Fugit worked in US embassies and missions in Brazil, Angola, Belgium, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Pakistan. His final assignment was as the Political Adviser to the Commander of US Central Command in Tampa, FL. He has also worked extensively in the Middle East and Northeast Africa. After retirement, he was called to duty to work again at Central Command during the Afghanistan operation (2002) and the Iraq invasion (2003). Take a short refreshment break and then begin our second lecture of the morning. Ed Fugit will be your speaker as he shares his experiences - and challenges - of living and raising children overseas.
 Lunch: Hotel Dining Room
 Afternoon: Our motor coach will provide transportation to downtown St. Petersburg for time on your own. Explore what make downtown St. Pete famous: visit the world renown museums, shop in the many galleries and boutiques or simply stroll the waterfront district.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Eckerd College Continuing Education Dining Hall. A selection of various entrees to choose from in a self-service format with trays.
 Evening: Then watch a short video about life inside the Embassy. Travel - with unprecedented access - to American embassies around the world in this behind-the-scenes glimpse into the intriguing, glamorous, sometimes dangerous, lives of US diplomats. From Revolutionary War diplomacy to our current response to our global terrorism, it is a revealing look at the human face of American diplomacy in National Geographic's "Ambassador: Inside the Embassy." This will be followed by a Q&A session with Wayne.
   
Accommodations: Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Venezuela After Chavez / Foreign Service and the National Interest / Africa: Embassy in Crisis
(Wednesday, February 5)
   
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel with at least one hot item. Assorted fruit, juice, coffee and tea.
 Morning: Begin the morning with Joseph Smith as he helps you explore "Venezuela After Chavez. Mr. Smith entered the Foreign Service in 1956 and served in Algiers, Madrid, Valencia, Bilbao, Asuncion, Bogotá, and Medellin, with two tours in Department of State, and one year at the University of California, Berkeley in Advanced Economics/ Political Studies. Enjoy a short refreshment break. Complete the morning with Wade Matthews, former career diplomat with the US Foreign Service. In addition with a variety of postings that include Acting Ambassador/Deputy Ambassador in Chile and Deputy Director to the Organization of American States (OAS), Mr. Matthews also was Professor of Strategy and Policy at the Naval War College. This morning Mr. Matthews will discuss how the US Foreign Service helps formulate and implement policies that further US national interest, both in theory and practice.
 Lunch: Hotel Dining Room.
 Afternoon: Learn about the challenges an embassy faces during times of crisis. Mr. Anthony Dalsimer whose Foreign Service career has been mostly in Africa, will share with us his experiences in Africa.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Eckerd College Continuing Education Dining Hall. A selection of various entrees to choose from in a self-service format with trays.
 Evening: Lecture or evening presentation to be determined
   
Accommodations: Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: More Tales of the Foreign Service / Officer as a Diplomat / Musical Entertainment
(Thursday, February 6)
   
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel with at least one hot item. Assorted fruit, juice, coffee and tea.
 Morning: Wane Griffith will be back this morning to share more of his life in the Foreign Service through anecdotes and stories. Take a short refreshment break. Learn from Foreign Affairs Officer John Reppert the challenges of an Officer as a Diplomat. John has been actively involved in Foreign Affairs since 1966, serving overseas as an Army Officer for 14 years, including more than six as an attaché in Embassy Moscow, and three years as a Department of Defense civilian, while Dean of the College at the Marshal Center 2003-2006. He has a PhD in International Relations for the George Washington University in 1982. John taught at the US Military Academy, the Army War College, and served as Executive Director for Research at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Kennedy School of Government and Harvard University.
 Lunch: Hotel Dining Room.
 Afternoon: Take a break from the classroom and board our motor coach for a field trip to the Museum of Fine Arts. From a legendary permanent collection, to fascinating traveling exhibits, to exciting events in the heart of downtown's scenic waterfront, the Museum of Fine Arts is ready to inspire you with diverse and ever-changing opportunities to experience art. Discover 4,500 years of civilization in thousands of objects extending from antiquity to the present. Highlights include masterpieces from Monet, Cezanne, Renoir and others, a sculpture garden, a Steuben glass gallery and one of Florida's most respected photography collections.
 Dinner: Dinner at the Eckerd College Continuing Education Dining Hall. The buffet at the campus dining hall includes hot entrees, side dishes, salad bar, soup, deli meats, bread, fresh fruit, desserts and beverages. Self-service format with trays.
 Evening: Take a break tonight and enjoy some live musical entertainment with one of our most favorite Road Scholar lecturers and performers - Joy Katzen-Guthrie.
   
Accommodations: Magnuson Hotel - Marina Cove
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Public Diplomacy / Wrap-up Session
(Friday, February 7)
   
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel with at least one hot item. Assorted fruit, juice, coffee and tea.
 Morning: Learn about Public Diplomacy from Eckerd College's own Diplomat in Residence, Donna Oglesby. Donna has over twenty-five years experience in cultural and public diplomacy culminating as Counselor of the Agency, the ranking career position in the United States Information Agency (USIA), from 1993-1996. She is the recipient of numerous awards including: the Alliance for International Educational and Cultural Exchange Award for Outstanding Service; USIA Distinguished Honor Award; the Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Public Diplomacy from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and a Presidential Honor Award. In addition to being faculty at Eckerd College, where she teaches courses on international relations and American foreign policy, Professor Oglesby is a member of the Tampa Bay Committee on Foreign Affairs, and a member of the Public Diplomacy Council. Articles by Donna Oglesby on cultural and public diplomacy have been published by the United States Institute of Peace and the Foreign Service Journal. Take a short refreshment break. Final session of the week is a wrap-up session. Discussion/ Q&A will be lead by Wayne Griffith and one of our speakers.
 Lunch: Hotel Dining Room
 Afternoon: Program ends with lunch today. Thank you for choosing Eckerd College and the Magnuson Hotel for your Road Scholar experience.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


Realities of Foreign Service Life


Author: Associates of the American Foreign Service Worldwide


Description: Mention a diplomatic career and most people imagine high-level meetings, formal dress and cocktail parties. Few stop to think that behind the occasional glitter of official functions are thousands of families facing all the routines and crises of life-births, deaths, childrearing, divorce-far from home, relatives, and friends, in an unfamiliar and sometimes unfriendly country and culture. This book provides reflections and perspectives on the realities of Foreign Service life as experienced by members of the Foreign Service community around the world. The writers share their unvarnished views on a wide variety of topics they care about: maintaining long-distance relationships, raising teens abroad, dealing with depression, coping with evacuations, readjusting to life in the United States, and many others. These are stories from the diplomatic trenches-true experiences from those who have lived the lifestyle and want to share their hard-learned lessons with others.



America's Other Army: The U.S. Foreign Service and 21st Century Diplomacy


Author: Kralev, Nicholas


Description: "America’s Other Army" brings the high-flying world of international diplomacy down to earth and puts a human face on a mysterious profession that has undergone a dramatic transformation since September 11, 2001. Through the stories of American diplomats, the book explains how their work affects millions of people in the United States and around the world every day, and how it contributes to U.S. security and prosperity. It shows a more inclusive American diplomacy that has moved beyond interacting with governments and has engaged with the private sector, civil society and individual citizens. Having visited more than 50 embassies and interviewed some 600 American diplomats, the author reveals a Foreign Service whose diversity and professional versatility have shattered old perceptions and redefined modern diplomacy. But he also depicts a service not fully equipped to address the complex challenges of the 21st century.



Career Diplomacy: Life and Work in the U.S. Foreign Service, Second Edition


Author: Kopp, Harry W.


Description: Career Diplomacy—now in its second edition—is an insider's guide that examines the foreign service as an institution, a profession, and a career. Harry W. Kopp and Charles A. Gillespie, both of whom had long and distinguished careers in the foreign service, provide a full and well-rounded picture of the organization, its place in history, its strengths and weaknesses, and its role in American foreign affairs. Based on their own experiences and through interviews with over 100 current and former foreign service officers and specialists, the authors lay out what to expect in a foreign service career, from the entrance exam through midcareer and into the senior service—how the service works on paper, and in practice. The second edition addresses major changes that have occurred since 2007: the controversial effort to build an expeditionary foreign service to lead the work of stabilization and reconstruction in fragile states; deepening cooperation with the U.S. military and the changing role of the service in Iraq and Afghanistan; the ongoing surge in foreign service recruitment and hiring at the Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development; and the growing integration of USAID’s budget and mission with those of the Department of State.





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