Ringling College of Art & Design hosts RPCVs

Thanks for the ‘heads up’ from Leita Kaldi (Senegal 1993-96)


Volunteer and Club Fair

Sarasota, Florida


James Charnell talking about the Peace Corps


The “Volunteer and Club Fair” is an annual event during normal times, but this was the first event post covid restrictions at the Ringling College of Art & Design, in Sarasota, Florida.
This event is designed for the students at the college. There was a screener at the door to facilitate the entry of the students attending the event and to allow the invited clubs and volunteer groups to enter. The students join clubs affiliated with the college and find out more about both campus based and outside volunteer opportunities, such as the Peace Corps, especially since the college hosts select outside groups to join the event. RPCV GCFL being one of those.

(L-R) Jim Charnell (Mali 2000-03), Gina Walker, wife of Forrest Walker, and Forrest Walker (Philippines 1985-87)

The “Volunteer and Club Fair” has been going on for at least 10 years. The RPCV GCFL affiliate had participated in the event prior to the last two years of restrictions due to covid.

The RPCV’s manning the table were: James Charnell (Mali 2000-03), Forrest Walker  (Philippines(1985-87), and support team member Gina Walker, Walker’s wife.



Leave a comment
  • Thanks so much for posting this, John. This means a lot to our group.

    Peace and warm regards,

    Leita Kaldi Davis
    President RPCVGCFL

  • What a great honor it was for my wife and I to continue our lifetime of service to others via this student engagement event with the Peace Corps. The students of the Ringling College of Art & Design were a pleasure to speak with and their energy is critical to the future.

    As Jim and I manned the Peace Corps table we were actively engaging the students and drawing them out of their comfort zones and toward our Peace Corps display.Telling them stories and showing them new possibilities. My mask prevented me from deploying my usual smile, so I used my eyes to express happiness to see them and spoke accordingly. It was then my moment to share. So fulfilling.

    Many students were concerned about art studies not matching up with the Peace Corps. But when I informed them that going into the Peace Corps would allow them to be inspired by the art of other countries they could see a new path forward. In some cases I actually watched their entire vision transform from uncertainty to a renewed confidence. They could see their passion for art fold into a broader opportunity to likewise help others in need. As for me, the third goal became real before my very eyes. It is very rare to see such, rare indeed. Thank you.

    All the best,
    Forrest Walker
    The Philippines – 1985-87

  • PC Honduras included artists in the mid 1970’s. I remember one young man who served as an illustrator for the national planning agency and a young woman who taught art in a school.

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