Date: 09/15/2010 Description: Hispanic Heritage Month 2010: Mary Vargas - State Dept ImageCurrently serving as a consular officer in Tijuana, Mexico, Mary works on American Citizens Services cases. Soon, she will move on to the position of political officer in Karachi, Pakistan.

The daughter of Mexican immigrants, Mary grew up in a very politically active, southern California home. Through frequent family trips to Mexico and volunteering, Mary’s parents educated her about the strong disparities between the U.S. and the rest of the world. This motivated her to pursue an international career that would help the U.S. build stronger relationships with its neighbors while promoting international development. Mary went on to pursue a B.A. in international relations and economic development from the Elliott School at The George Washington University and a master’s in Pacific and international affairs from the University of California, San Diego International Relations/Pacific Studies (IR/PS) Program. She thanks the State Department and the Pickering Fellowship in foreign affairs for giving her the opportunity to pursue her academic goals and represent her country as a Foreign Service officer.

In the future Mary, an economic-coned officer, hopes to work in the areas of grassroots foreign assistance, corporate social responsibility, and other groundbreaking international economic and political development strategies.