The U.S. Department of State has named Faisal Hassan, a Malaysian alumnus of the Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Program, as State Alumni Member of the Month. Hassan was selected in recognition of his work as president of YES Alumni Malaysia, an association promoting youth empowerment through leadership and volunteerism. In the past year, with support from the U.S. Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, he has been involved in leadership training, teaching English to disadvantaged youth, and raising public awareness to promote international peace.
During his semester at a high school in Seattle, Washington, Hassan had his first taste of American-style teamwork by taking part in club activities and watching Seattle Mariners baseball. Hassan cites family, friendship, and an open mind as the three elements that made his U.S. exchange experience memorable.
Returning to Malaysia from his 2007 YES program, Hassan brought home lessons learned about teamwork, friendship, and leadership. As a strong proponent of new media tools, he makes full use of Facebook, his association’s blog, and the State Alumni website to showcase YES Alumni Malaysia’s many achievements.
In November 2009, Hassan and YES Alumni Malaysia hosted a Global YES Alumni Conference welcoming more than 50 YES alumni worldwide to a global version of the train-the-trainers leadership skills development program.
Hassan’s contributions as a YES alumnus and leader have positioned him to share his American exchange experience both locally and internationally. He currently works with YES alumni in Ghana and India to assist them in starting their own alumni associations. He also studies mass communications in a university program, and hopes to pursue a career in Malaysian politics.
Throughout February, Hassan’s leadership and promotion of community service will be recognized on the State Alumni website, https://alumni.state.gov, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ official website for the more than one million alumni who have participated in a Department-sponsored exchange program. Each month, the Bureau’s Office of Alumni Affairs, which supports alumni as they build on their exchange experiences, confers the award on an outstanding alumnus or alumna. For more information, visit http://exchanges.state.gov/alumni/alumnus.html.
Media Contact: Catherine Stearns, StearnsCL@state.gov or phone (202) 632-6437