Management and Program Analyst Natasha

Management and Program Analyst - NatashaJob Title: Management and Program Analyst
Name: Natasha
Location: Office of Citizenship, Washington D.C.

The Office of Citizenship provides resources for aspiring citizens and for adult educators and also promotes the civic integration of immigrants in the United States. A Management and Program Analyst in the Office of Citizenship may coordinate and facilitate teacher training seminars for 50 to 200 participants. The seminars are held across the United States to help adult educators and volunteers learn to teach civics more effectively and prepare immigrant students for the naturalization test. At these seminars, Management and Program Analysts may present historical information, instructional tips for the naturalization test and an overview of the Office of Citizenship’s products and publications.

Analysts also work on key projects and may perform project management duties. These include creating weekly/monthly project tracking tools, providing status updates to team members and leadership, and creating and analyzing reports.

You travel a lot for your work. What is that like?
The opportunity to travel around the United States is amazing! Not only do I have the opportunity to collaborate with other USCIS employees in the field, but I also get to interact with public stakeholders – adult educators in particular – about the naturalization process. Being separated from my loved ones is not something I look forward to when traveling, but I stay connected. My family is very supportive and understands the type of work that I do. That support is very important to me, and I get a great sense of fulfillment from being able to go home knowing that I contributed to the mission of USCIS.

How did you end up at USCIS from school at the University of Maryland, College Park?
I can honestly say that I had no idea that I would end up at USCIS. As an immigrant (from Nigeria and Barbados), I came to the United States to begin high school and to study in college. I studied in the field of curriculum and instruction, with a focus in elementary education. I became an elementary school teacher, but later decided to change paths and pursue a career in the field of training and education.

I applied for a number of internships during my summer break, and l was offered an internship at the Department of Education’s Project Management Office. This was my first introduction to working in the federal government and I was inspired by the dedication and professionalism of my colleagues. After my internship, I interviewed with a few government contracting firms and was offered a position to be placed with USCIS. Three years later, in 2010, I became a federal government employee.

Tell us an experience you don’t think you would have had elsewhere?
I had the opportunity to support a project to develop a naturalization test and interview video for the Office of Citizenship. I portrayed an African applicant and was asked a series of questions during a simulated interview. This was particularly exciting for me because I went through the interview process when I became a naturalized citizen. As I travel to our teacher training seminars, it is very rewarding to receive comments from teachers about how excited their students become when they view the video. They feel more prepared and it reduces their anxiety because they can relate to me. It is very touching to see that I am able to help other applicants through their journey to become U.S. citizens.

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