Ayesha Edwards: Agencies need to embrace social media

Monday - 7/25/2011, 6:00am EDT

By Jolie Lee
Federal News Radio

This profile is part of the Federal News Radio special report, "The New Face of Government." Federal News Radio profiled a total of six young feds for this series.

Name: Ayesha Edwards
Age: 29 years old
Job: Management and Program Analyst, Office of Innovation and Improvement
Agency: Education
Time in government: 4 years

Ayesha Edwards joined the agency in 2007, originally to evaluate children's shows. She now oversees audits of grantees, making sure Education Department dollars are well-spent.

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Edwards said social media is an integral part of Millenials' lives, but at work she can't access Facebook or chat online.

"We use social networking a lot to get information out," she said. "I understand why government has to regulate those things, but I wish we had more access to more technology."

Edwards said social networks allow workers to connect with fellow coworkers, as well as to their constituents. Social networks let the public "put a face" to the government, she said.

"With limited travel budgets, we can't always get out to meet the people we serve," Edwards said. "So it would be great if there was some kind of mechanism to build our network."

Chatting online is also an outlet for young feds while they work. It could actually save time at work because employees wouldn't feel like they had to get up and talk to people or take as many breaks, Edwards said.

Check out more from the Federal News Radio special report, "The New Face of Government."

Part 1 - Introduction: New Face of Government

Part 2 - Survey reveals both opportunities, rift between generations

Part 3 - Practical tips for engaging young feds

Part 4 - Young feds share what they really think (Read the profiles of six young feds)