Charles Setchell, who graduated from UC Davis in 1975, will visit campus today and Thursday to speak about his work with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance. He has been their senior shelter, settlements, and hazard mitigation advisor for 14 years, responding to everything from the 2010 Haiti earthquake to ongoing turmoil in Afghanistan.
Today, Setchell will host an information session at the Internship and Career Center from 2 to 4 p.m., and from 5 to 6:30 p.m. he will meet with the Engineers Without Borders Club in Ghausi Hall. On Thursday, he will attend an open Peace Corps event at the International House from 7 to 9 p.m.
His specialty is disaster risk reduction, which requires a systematic and immediate approach to assessing and avoiding potential risks to disaster. Although Setchell initially fell in love with cities by visiting San Francisco with his parents once or twice a month, he said UC Davis’ undergraduate program set him on a path toward a career in urban planning and crisis management.
“I’m really looking forward to getting on campus again and speaking to current students and faculty. I kind of wish there had been someone when I was an undergrad with the kind of background I have now, that I’ve developed over time, to provide a bigger picture of the world than I recall ever having. Hopefully I will spark someone to join the Peace Corps or get involved with international development,” Setchell said.
— Chelsea Mehra