Ross Kastner graduated cum laude from The Citadel in 2006 with a B.S. in business administration. He commissioned into the Army as a field artilleryman and, after completing the officer basic course, deployed to Iraq with the 3rd Infantry Division in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Upon returning, Ross served as a platoon leader and deputy operations officer before transitioning to the military intelligence career field in 2011. Following intelligence officer training, he served as a battalion intelligence officer for an artillery unit in the 4th Infantry Division. He later took command of a brigade headquarters company and deployed to Kuwait in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. In 2013, Ross was accepted into the Foreign Area Officer program and proceeded to the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, CA for a year-long course of intensive Russian language study. From there, he was assigned to the George C. Marshall Center in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany for a 14-month period of regional training and immersive travel in and around the former Soviet Union. Ross plans to focus his studies at Yale on international security and diplomacy with an interest in Eurasia. After completing his studies, he will return to the U.S. Army Foreign Area Officer field.