Ever since his first visit to Arizona State University, alumnus Abraham Hamadeh knew it was the ideal place for him to study political science.
“From the small class size to the friendly community, Arizona State University is a perfect fit,” Abraham said. “I wanted to go to law school and political science is the best route for someone to grasp a lot of different areas, just thinking differently and analytically.”
In 2012, Abraham graduated with a Bachelor of Science in political science from the School of Politics and Global Studies. During his time as an undergraduate, he developed close relationships with professors in the school and the future Center for Political Thought and Leadership.
Professor Sheldon Simon, an expert on international relations, and Donald Critchlow, the director of the center, were two of the most influential faculty during his time at the university, he said.
“The professors were the best part about my time at ASU,” Abraham said. “Even though it’s such a large school, you can really develop a very personal relationship with professors. Overall, they gave me great advice on my future.”
In 2016, Abraham received a Juris Doctor from the University of Arizona College of Law as well as his commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserve. During law school, he was awarded the Udall Fellowship from the Arizona Prosecuting Attorneys’ Advisory Council. As a fellow, Abraham had the opportunity to work at the U.S. Attorney's Office, Arizona Attorney General's Office, Pima County Attorney's Office and the Tucson City Prosecutor's Office.
“It was a great experience to be able to work at the local, state and federal levels,” Abraham said.
Throughout his educational experiences, Abraham had many opportunities to travel. When he was an undergraduate at ASU, he studied in Washington D.C. for 13 months. When he was a law student, he travelled to Ghana, Israel, Turkey and Egypt.
“I really love that ASU had a lot of flexibility with getting on-the-hands training while having online classes as well,” he said about his time in Washington D.C. “The flexibility ASU provided was invaluable because when you have hands-on experience it’s so much different than just sitting in a classroom getting practical ability.”
Abraham is currently a deputy county attorney for the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office and just finished four months of military intelligence training for the U.S. Army. He says the experience in the Army is rewarding due to the diverse range of opinions and experiences of his fellow officers.
“We would talk about philosophy, politics, religion and war for hours,” he said. “I made life-long friends with my fellow lieutenants."
Abraham serves on the board at ASU’s Center for Political Thought and Leadership. He’s also a founding member of the Emerging Leaders program, a group of young professionals who serve on the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean’s Council to find new ways for the college and community to succeed.
“I have a real sense of pride with ASU,” Abraham said. “It’s hard to be connected with the alumni when you have a lot of things going on and juggling your work/life balance. I want to be an advocate and ambassador for that regard. I just want to be tied to the community more.”
Abraham encourages current students and recent alumni to not be afraid of failure
“The only thing worse than failing is never having the opportunity to fail,” he said. “You shouldn’t be afraid of almost anything. It’s just a matter of trying and if you don’t try, you’ll never know. Regret is really debilitating so it’s more important to try and fail then to have never tried at all.”
Looking to the future, Abraham wants to continue serving his country through his military enlistment as well as his community with his legal experience.
“I envision myself working for a few years in the public sector as a prosecutor to gain courtroom experience and then eventually moving over to the private sector and work in business,” Abraham said. “We’ll see where it goes from there but public service is definitely on the horizon.”
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