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9 ASU students, alumni among finalists for Presidential Management Fellows program

ASU among universities with highest number of finalists third year in a row


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Established in 1977, the Presidential Management Fellows Program is the federal government's premier leadership development program for advanced degree holders across all academic disciplines, matching outstanding graduate students with federal opportunities. ASU photo

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March 13, 2024

Through the Presidential Management Fellows program, a leadership development program for advanced degree holders across all academic disciplines, nine Arizona State University students and alumni strive to impact their community and the world.

The nine finalists apply for placement in full-time two-year appointments that prepare them for leadership positions in the U.S. federal government. If placed, they are given a full salary package with benefits, experiential training and professional development opportunities.

“The Presidential Management Fellowship is a remarkable, life-changing opportunity for our graduates,” said Kyle Mox, associate dean for national scholarships and director of the Lorraine W. Frank Office of National Scholarships Advisement, which guides applicants, ASU students and alumni who seek major external scholarships and fellowships.

“We are all very proud of the hard work our finalists put into their applications.” Mox said. “We’re also excited to watch their professional trajectories from this point forward. I consider programs like PMF to be an incredible ‘accelerator,’ in that it will help our students reach their goals much faster and in a deeper way than they could imagine."

2024 Presidential Management Fellows Program finalists from ASU

• Shamiah Bullock, ‘23 MA, international affairs and leadership, The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; ‘24 MEd, secondary education and training, Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College.

• Dhrasti S.Dalal, ‘24 MS, biomedical engineering, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering.

• Katherine Hathaway, ‘23 MS, global technology and development, School for the Future of Innovation in Society.

• Levi Helm, ‘23 PhD, biology, New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences.

• Nia Hickson, ‘23 MA, education policy, Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College.

• Margaret Huck, ‘23 MS, applied biological sciences, College of Integrative Sciences and Arts.

• Mara Karageozian, ‘24 PhD, geological sciences, The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

• Ashlyn J. Nam, ‘24 DNP, family nurse practitioner, Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation.

• Devin Parker, ‘24 MA, international affairs and leadership, The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

For the past three years, ASU has placed a record number of students. The latest diverse cohort gathers academics from various disciplines — from biology to international affairs and leadership.

Many students and alumni applied to the program because they were inspired by the skill development and career guidance the program offers. One finalist, Katherine Hathaway, recently earned a master’s degree in global technology and development.

“I was motivated to apply for the PMF by a strong desire to continue my service to the United States in a significant way," Hathaway said. "Having served in the military, I have always harbored a deep respect for public service and a desire to contribute to the federal government. The PMF program represents an unparalleled opportunity to achieve this by working on challenging projects contributing to the nation's welfare. It aligns with my passion and commitment to excellence."

At ASU, faculty, advisors, coordinators and mentors are looking for people who can fulfill the vision of an award such as PMF, including the Graduate College and the Lorraine W. Frank Office of Scholarships Advisement. 

“One reason why ASU’s graduate students continue to be selected as PMF finalists year after year is the preparation and support they receive,” said Mitch Hobza, senior program manager for distinguished graduate scholarships in the Office of National Scholarships Advisement.

“Part of PMF’s mission is to advance future leaders who will excel at serving the public; the program seeks applicants who demonstrate integrity, foster empathy and understanding, and engage with different perspectives as collaborators," Hobza said. "These qualities are cultivated through ASU’s commitment to its charter and design aspirations, underpinning our finalists’ education. As a result, they are better prepared to assume fundamental responsibility for the communities they wish to serve.”

Another finalist, Devin Parker, a current international affairs and leadership student at The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, reinforced how much ASU and PMF have prepared him for the future.

"ASU has played a pivotal role in preparing me for my desired governmental position through its immersive educational experiences, expert mentorship and networking opportunities," Parker said. "One of the main reasons I chose ASU was the opportunity to learn from individuals with lived experiences in international affairs and leadership. The faculty bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise from their extensive government, diplomacy and national security careers.

For many going through the process, the experience in and of itself proves invaluable regardless of the outcome. In addition to appreciating the firsthand experience and learning opportunities from faculty, students enjoy a smooth and clear application process.

The Office of National Scholarships Advisement and ASU’s Graduate College support students interested in applying to the Presidential Management Fellowship by hosting information sessions and conducting mock interviews with applicants selected as semifinalists.

Graduate students interested in applying to the PMF for the 2024 application cycle are encouraged to attend the “Pathways to Federal Careers for Graduate Students” event in the early fall, as the application for PMF usually opens in early-to-mid September.

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