I lucked into having these interests since I don't come from a family that travels much. I was fortunate enough to have good parents. When I was 21 I saved up money and went and worked as an English and math teach in some village schools in India. My life has not been the same since then. I got very interested in learning about severe poverty after that experience and after a couple of years of working in Virginia, went back to school and made international development the focus of an MA. I took out loans to go and study for a year in Ghana, in West Africa and again learned more than I ever could here.
While working on my thesis I put out PhD applications and job applications for aid and nonprofit organizations. Did not get any bites on the latter, but got into a PhD program here at FSU. Now in my third year, I always wonder if this was the right decision for me, but on the other hand I really do love what I study and all the opportunities that being at a university brings. I actually get paid to take courses! (Well, technically I get paid to grade papers, but I can take whatever courses I want for free!)