Last year, I received an offer for a full-time position at the United States Department of Energy in the environmental management division. At age 21 and with only an associate’s degree, I became the youngest analyst in my department’s history. It was at this time, between working full-time, taking college classes, attending conferences, and participating in other extracurricular activities, that I decided to enroll in HBX CORe, which changed my life forever.

My parents emigrated from Pakistan to the United States with barely a few dollars in their pockets. My father’s property business was hit hard in the market crash of 2008, and with many of my family members face longstanding health issues, we have struggled my entire lifetime.  I always believed that education would be the catalyst that propelled me to break this cycle.

I came to the United States at the age of two, and with the exception of attending an international British boarding school, I have lived here majority of my life. I enrolled in community college after graduating from high school, and I eventually transferred George Mason University and became the first in my family to attend college. I am now entering my senior year and will graduate with a degree in Information Systems and Operations Management from the School of Business.Shahrukh; width: 200px; align: center;

As an energy analyst at the Department of Energy, I work for the environmental management division for nuclear waste removal. My main responsibilities include analyzing investments to insure they are in accordance with the budget and generating reports from laboratory sites. I also assist in energy efficiency projects in the information technology sector. 

The skills and knowledge I gained in HBX CORe enhance my work every day. Learning financial economics really shaped my understanding of and ability to do budget work. Government budgets can be extensive, so ensuring they are utilized properly according to each project is a significant task. I also use my knowledge of economics in looking at supply chain management and utilizing energy resources. Economics for Managers helped me understand how trading works, and I was able to apply this knowledge to better understand those concepts in the context of the energy industry.

Additionally, Business Analytics taught me how to use Excel to do analytical work.  Our projects at the Department of Energy are very data-intensive, and Excel is a crucial tool. Learning how to use Excel to analyze and organize incoming data has been extremely applicable to my role.

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My grandfather lived without electricity in a village in Pakistan, and I remember the times that we didn’t have electricity when we moved into our house in the United States. I wish my grandfather were alive to see his grandson start a career at the Department of Energy, committed to finding ways to provide resources like water and electricity to everyone around the world. My long term career goal is to fight climate change and work toward developing clean energy solutions to end our reliance on fossil fuels. I am dedicated to becoming an ambassador for the environment and making the world a better place for future generations through my work.

Shahrukh Nasim

About the Author

Shahrukh Nasim is student at George Mason University studying Information Systems and Operations Management. He has a broad range of experience in green technology, and he is currently working with the Department of Energy in the environmental management division. He is passionate about the environment, clean water, renewable clean energy, nuclear policy, and writing.