Academic journal article Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences

FCS Careers: Consumer Education & Outreach for Federal Government

Academic journal article Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences

FCS Careers: Consumer Education & Outreach for Federal Government

Article excerpt

At the Federal Citizen Information Center (FCIC) Jacqueline's main job is to reach out to federal agency and private sector partners, inform them about the distribution program, and determine how FCIC can help them fulfill their mission to consumers. She also writes website content, finds consumer material on the web for the FCIC website, and participates in consumer educationfocused conferences. The rewarding part of the job is being able to connect consumers with relevant, timely information as well as help agencies fulfill their missions. Jacqueline coordinated the FCIC exhibit at the 2010 AAFCS Conference & Expo, and she has exhibited at the Jump$tart Financial Educators Conference, Financial Literacy Day on the Hill, and the FCCLA National Cluster meeting in Washington, DC.

The challenge of the job is trying to connect as many consumers as possible with FCICs information about consumer problems and government service. The family and consumer sciences (FCS) focus is on individuals, families, and communities, and indeed, FCIC brings information that will enhance lives. The Consumer Action Handbook is full of information on how to be a savvy consumer: tips on money management, making major purchases, how not to be defrauded, and how to write a consumer complaint letter. It also includes contact information for federal, state, and local agencies as well as corporate consumer affairs offices. FCICs Consumer Information Catalog encourages people to order print publications on topics such as health, money, and federal benefits. See USA.gov for easy access to online government information and call 1-800-FEDINFO with consumers' questions.

Without the help of passionate teachers at California State University, Northridge (CSUN), Jacqueline would not be in the field, let alone have the job she loves. Professor Allan Martin opened many opportunities, mostly through professional development, for students to network, and to have hands-on experiences. Jacqueline was able to be a part of the CSUN student chapter of SOCAP (Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals). Through SOCAP, students met corporate affairs managers who told the real story about what happens in their departments. In the government, Jacqueline (and others) interned at the Los Angeles Department of Consumer Affairs while completing an FCS degree with a business track and a marketing minor. …

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