The U.S. Department of State places officials in more than 270 diplomatic locations worldwide. Promoting peace and stability around the globe as well as protecting American interests abroad are among the agency’s goals. The State Department selects and hires foreign service officers and specialists to work in its Washington, D.C. bureaus or in one of the U.S. embassies, consulates and foreign missions throughout the world.
Domestic Civil Service Opportunities
The Department of State offers domestic civil service career opportunities in Washington, D.C. and its offices across the nation. Applicants can choose from career fields such as foreign affairs, budget administration, public affairs, passport visa services and information technology management. State Department domestic civil service jobs also include positions in contract procurement, personnel management, general accounting, management analysis and legal services. Vacancies are posted on USA Jobs. Applicants must follow instructions and fax a resume, copies of college transcripts and certifications and any other required documentation by the closing date listed on the vacancy announcement.
Foreign Service Opportunities
To work in the foreign service, a job candidate must be available for assignments at any overseas post. Jobs for foreign service specialists are posted on USA Jobs. Veterans are given hiring preference but must submit form DD-214 -- Discharge Papers and Separation Documents. Job applicants for foreign service specialist must take the foreign service oral assessment, undergo a comprehensive background investigation and receive medical and security clearances before being hired and serving abroad. In addition to these requirements, a candidate for the position of foreign service officer must take the foreign service officer test and submit a personal narrative to the qualifications evaluation panel.
Basic Requirements for Job Candidates
Applicants for the foreign service must be U.S. citizens on the date they submit their applications. They must be at least 21 years old but not older than 60 when appointed. The Department of State looks for certain qualifications in its job candidates including a dedication to public service. Candidates must have effective oral and written communication skills, show initiative and a readiness to assume responsibility, demonstrate objectivity in decision-making and have the ability to perform under highly stressful situations. Additional key skills and qualities essential to working in the foreign service include the ability to analyze and use information, respect for people’s cultural differences and the ability to employ practical judgment.
Internship Program Applications
The U.S. Department of State Internship Program offers unpaid internships to college students who want foreign affairs experience. To be eligible for the internship program a student must be a U.S. citizen, in good academic standing at an accredited college or university and have earned 60 credits or more. Intern applicants must submit to random drug testing, successfully undergo a background investigation and receive student security clearances. Speaking a foreign language and completing some academic coursework in the area of interest increases a student’s chances for being selected. Students who meet the eligibility criteria can apply by submitting their applications through the Gateway to State system.
- Careers State Department: What We Do
- Careers State Department: Civil Service
- Careers State Department: Foreign Service Specialist
- Careers State Department: Foreign Service Officer
- Careers State Department: Foreign Service Officer Qualifications
- Careers State Department: Student Internship Program
- Foreign Agricultural Service: 2014 Guide to the Foreign Service Officer Selection Process
- Photo Credit jim pruitt/iStock/Getty Images
How to Work for the Department of Defense
How to Work for the Department of Defense. The United States Department of Defense, centered in the Pentagon, administrates all federal national...
How to Get a California State Job
The California state government offers numerous jobs in departments ranging from the California Lottery, Folsom State Prison, the Highway Patrol and the...
How to Apply for a Department of Education Job
However challenging, working for the Department of Education allows you to enrich the lives of those seeking learning and growth. Obtaining a...
How to Join the LAPD SWAT
The Los Angeles Police Department Special Weapons and Tactics, or SWAT, team specializes in high risk warrants, hostage situations and suicide attempts....
How to Get State Jobs
Applying for state positions is an involved process, frequently requiring lengthy exams and multiple interviews just to be considered for the desired...
Secrets to Getting a Government Job
Many government jobs are highly coveted, as they offer a high level of job security, interesting work and fair pay. Competition for...