Diana Kachman ’23 selected for 50th cohort of Luce Scholars

Kachman will travel to Asia for the Luce Scholars Program, which focuses on cross-cultural exchange and leadership development.

Erica Helgerud ’20 11 April 2024 Posted In:
Headshot of Diana Kachman, outdoors.
Diana Kachman ’23Photo:

Diana Kachman ’23 has been selected as a member of the 50th cohort of Luce Scholars, which will allow her to embark on a “transformative journey of cross-cultural exchange and leadership development.”

The Luce Scholars Program is a 13-month experiential fellowship program that offers immersive, individualized professional placement in Asia along with stipends and language training. The program aims to forge more robust, informed, and compassionate relationships across geographic borders by creating opportunities for young Americans across diverse sectors and interests to deepen their ties and understanding of the countries, cultures, and people of Asia. 

Currently a Weitz Fellow with Autism Action Partnership in Omaha, Nebraska, Kachman was hunting for more fellowship opportunities to apply for when she found the Luce Scholars Program.

“I applied because I’ve never visited Asia before and wanted to challenge myself in an utterly new setting,” Kachman said. “I also liked that the placements would be individualized to fit each participant’s career interests.”

Kachman has not yet received her job placement from the program, but she’s confident that her time at Carleton and her experience so far as a Weitz Fellow have prepared her well for wherever she ends up.

“Carleton was the first time as an adult that I was away from my family for an extended period of time, and it helped me learn how to find and make community wherever I go,” Kachman said. “My experience as both a pre-health student and an English major helped me learn how to pursue multiple passions.”

“My time as a Weitz Fellow is helping me grow professionally and learn how to bring up my ideas to contribute to my organization,” she added. “As I want to work with underserved populations as a medical professional, Autism Action Partnership [has allowed me] to gain working and learning experience with the ASD community outside of a clinical setting.”

Like all Carls who travel abroad, Kachman is excited to broaden her interests while in Asia and experience things she’s never experienced before.

“I am most looking forward to seeing new places, meeting new people to hear their stories, and hopefully contributing to wherever I am placed in a positive way,” Kachman said. “I am also very excited to try new dishes and get an insight into any traditional medicine practices I come across!”

Kachman’s post-Carleton goals include attending medical school to earn a doctorate in medicine with a master’s in public health (aka an MD–MPH), and time with the Luce Scholars Program complements that ambition perfectly.

“This is an experience that I hope will help me shape the way I treat patients and advocate for them,” Kachman said. “I also want to continue living abroad at various points of my life to continue learning about the world and different cultures.”

Kachman’s advice for current students and alumni? Be true to yourself and do what you love!

“For Carls interested in programs like this,” she said, “I advise them to be themselves in interviews and to pursue all of their passions no matter how different they look.”

Erica Helgerud ’20 is the news and social media manager for Carleton College.