I’ve Got Your Back – Leading the Right Way
Originally posted by Emily Jarvis on GovLoop.
Young Government Leaders (YGL) and GovLoop present the NextGen Public Service Awards for superior public service and achievement. The 4th Annual NextGen Public Service Awards will be given at the 2014 NextGen Award’s Ceremony, which will kick off the NextGen Training Summit on July 23rd in Washington, DC. We have 18 finalists in six different categories. All month long we will be introducing you to the finalists.
Meet the Finalist:
Who: Aisha Hasan, Program Analyst, HHS
Achievement: Next Gen Public Service Award, Exemplary Leadership Category
“I am very sure that Aisha Hasan’s public service experience extends into her preschool years. The hard work that Aisha put towards her college internship positions allowed her to be selected as the University of Maryland’s first Federal Service Student Ambassador (FSSA). Aisha is the type of leader who achieves a goal and is immediately ready to set and pursue the next one. Leaders exist in many sectors of government; however, there are those select few who go above and beyond to direct their talents and skills toward success on an everyday basis. Those people are who I see defining exemplary leadership and Aisha Hasan far surpasses the regular leader.” – Desmond Proctor, Deputy US Marshal. Proctor nominated Hasan for the Exemplary Leadership Award.
Hasan’s focus on government started in college. She served as a policy intern in the Office of the Maryland Governor in 2009, in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in 2010, and in the Office of the Vice President within the Executive Office of the President in 2011.
For her dedication, Hasan was named the first Federal Service Student Ambassador to join 47 other undergraduate and graduate students in the mentorship and advisement of over 2150 students in the UMD community.
“I was so lucky to be in that cohort. I got to learn from some brilliant people. They taught me how you can bring efficiencies, how to be an early adaptor,” said Hasan.
“It helped me on so many levels because I was able to talk with folks at University of Maryland when I was an undergrad, with the senior leadership and senior staff there, to help develop opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students to go into federal service. It was just phenomenal being able to strategically increase public service awareness and work opportunities in the university community.”
After graduating college in 2011, Hasan obtained full-time employment as a program analyst under the HHS Office of the Secretary. It was a career choice that didn’t surprise her. “My parents have always instilled a notion of helping others. I became really interested in federal policy that could positively affect the lives of millions at once.”
Hasan also serves as the president of the Young Government Leaders, Bethesda Chapter, and founding president of UMD’s Federal Semester Alumni Association. “I love being able to come to work every morning and know that I’m helping to develop and influence policies that are good, positively affecting the lives of so many folks. It’s a phenomenal feeling, and something I can definitely foresee myself doing for a long time.”
Her dedication and drive does a lot to dispel the rumor that millennials are lazy and addicted to their phones.
“There is a perception that younger folks are being glued to their smartphones or are a little standoffish, but I think in order to effectively get anything done, regardless of where you’re working, what sector, or what organization, teamwork and collaboration is of the utmost importance. That’s what I do.”
What does Hasan think is the biggest misconception about government? “I ran into this actually when I was in undergrad. That was a pivotal moment in my life where I was taking classes and trying to figure out do I want to go public, do I want to go private. Through various internships, and my current position, and some of the other experiences that I’ve had, I think the biggest misconceptions that folks have about government, are that government workers are lazy and not passionate, which is so incredibly false.
“As government employees we’re really passionate about serving the public and doing essential work and helping others. We work hard at it because we must ensure the safety and improve the lives of the public we serve.”