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How my experience helps others get started in housing

December 1, 2023
Jessica W.
Jessica W.

Fannie Mae

Like many others starting their careers, Jessica wasn’t always certain where she would end up working. “I didn’t know housing was even an option for my career,” she said. “I fell into this industry.”

Now, she gets to help others navigate the challenges she experienced herself. As a Program Manager for Fannie Mae’s Future Housing Leaders (FHL) program, Jessica and her team help career starters find opportunities in housing by connecting college students to internships at leading companies.

Jessica reflects on how her work is more than just a job, read on to learn more.

Diverse perspectives help the industry serve all renters and homebuyers

The Future Housing Leaders program creates a community of bright minds with fresh ideas that are crucial to supporting equity in housing. “It’s so important that our workforce represents the people we’re serving,” Jessica stated. “To make the housing system work for the renter and homebuyer of tomorrow, we need a more diverse workforce, which will lead to improved innovations, more creative business solutions, and services created to support sustainable communities. I'm excited to see how the next generation of future housing leaders shapes the policies, products, and solutions needed to support the communities that are most impacted by housing disparities."

This program is one of the ways Fannie Mae invests in its mission to create a more equitable, sustainable housing finance system.

Helping others navigate career options is rewarding

Jessica enjoys making a positive impact on the people and communities she’s a part of. Her work in the FHL program helps students build industry knowledge, financial literacy, and professional skills so they can transition into a career in housing finance after college.

Jessica explains, “Topics like the importance of credit or the wealth-building benefits of homeownership weren’t discussed in my household. That knowledge wasn’t passed down from generation to generation,” she shared. “That’s why what we do is so important. It has a ripple effect. We’re helping students have those conversations earlier, and they’re able to pass that knowledge on within their networks.”

Jessica and her team take enormous pride in the work they do and how it gives more people the opportunity to make a difference in the housing industry. She reflected, “What we do, it’s a real labor of love that has a direct, meaningful impact.”

“That’s what matters to me,” continued Jessica, “we’re closing that knowledge gap and helping young people feel empowered to start their housing careers with confidence.”

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