A career as a paramilitary operations officer is not advised for the faint of heart. Paramilitary Operations Officers may be deliberately sent into harm’s way. Specialized Skills Officers use their skill sets to support CIA operations. Both of these officers require highly specialized training in both the academic and military fields. The outlook for these occupations remains steady. This is especially true when the US is at war.
The Department of Defense defines paramilitary forces as “forces or groups distinct from the regular armed forces of any country but resembling them in the organization, equipment, training or mission.” Paramilitary Operations Officers and Specialized Skills Officers can expect to live and work overseas for extended periods of time. These officers carry out highly specialized and often top secret missions gathering intelligence on sometimes extremely volatile international situations.
Education and Training
Paramilitary Operations Officers often have military special operations and battlefield leadership experience. Specialized Skills Officers often come from backgrounds such as aviation, maritime, military psychological warfare and counterintelligence. Both Paramilitary Operations Officer and Specialized Skills Officer occupations require a bachelor’s degree. Applicants must be less than 35 years of age and US citizens. An extensive medical, psychological and background investigation will also be conducted. This includes a polygraph interview.
The exact market outlook for Paramilitary Officers and Specialized Skills Officers, for national security reasons, cannot be released to the public. The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not publish employment data for the Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency and National Imagery and Mapping Agency. However, demand will continue for these occupations during times of war, domestically or overseas.
The salary range for both paramilitary operations officers and specialized skills officers varies widely. Among the primary influencing factors are education, specialized skill sets and demand. For example, a Paramilitary Operations Officer who speaks Spanish may be in less demand than one with who speaks Pashto or Dari, when working in Afghanistan. The bottom salary range for these officer’s salaries is $58,511, while the top is $81,204, according to the Central Intelligence Agency, as of March 2010.