GOVERNMENT CAREERS: Top Ten Tips for Finding and Applying to your Federal Dream Job or Internship

  • Published on

  • View

  • Download

Embed Size (px)


The Boston College Career Center Presents. GOVERNMENT CAREERS: Top Ten Tips for Finding and Applying to your Federal Dream Job or Internship. INTRODUCTION. The federal government is an excellent employer The process is different from other job searches Here are tips to help you. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


<ul><li><p>GOVERNMENT CAREERS:Top Ten Tips for Finding and Applying to your Federal Dream Job or Internship</p><p>The Boston College Career Center Presents</p></li><li><p>INTRODUCTION</p><p>The federal government is an excellent employerThe process is different from other job searchesHere are tips to help you </p></li><li><p>AREAS COVERED</p><p>Best ResourcesFind the AgencyFind the JobFind the InternshipThe Application: Resume, KSAs, ContactClearance</p></li><li><p>BEST RESOURCES</p><p>Making the Difference comprehensive user-friendly site on federal work: to the U.S. government: (see Agency A to Z index)Federal job listing site: jobs for students:</p></li><li><p>FIND THE JOBTIP #1: There are more than 160 federal agencies under the Executive Branch. and are large databases. Navigate with search/sort functions tailored to your skills and interests. Heres how:Resources: </p></li><li><p>FIND THE INTERNSHIPTIP #2: There are several different kinds of internships.</p><p>STEP (Student Training and Employment Program): Any student, especially 1st years and sophomores, any field; short term paid internship.SCEP (Student Career Experience Program): Primarily juniors, seniors, and graduate students; must be related to academic studies; most are paid; after completing 640 hours of successful work, you may be appointed to a permanent position without going through the traditional hiring process.FCIP (Federal Career Intern Program): Not really an internship: 2-year, entry level full time professional development position.PMF (Presidential Management Fellows Program): For students in final year of graduate study - apply in early fall with your schools nomination; highly prestigious 2-year position with rotational assignments.</p></li><li><p>THE APPLICATIONRESUMEFederal resumes do not have the same structure as resumes used in other marketplaces.</p><p>TIP #3: Understand the resume template prior to applying.</p><p>TIP #4: The first application screening step is often electronic. USE KEYWORDS adapted from the job/internship description. No one will see that great resume if it gets stopped at the first screen!</p><p>Resources:</p></li><li><p>THE APPLICATIONKSAs (Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities)Most postings list a set of position-relevant KSAs. Applicants create essays describing how they meet these job requirements.</p><p>TIP #5: KSAs are critical. Use the recommended CCAR (Context, Challenges, Action, Result) format to compose them.</p><p>TIP #6: Be specific, use relevant examples, write in clear language, include KEYWORDS in your text.</p><p>Resources:</p></li><li><p>THE APPLICATIONCONTACTYou actually can follow up! Wait 10-15 working days, then call or write. Show patience, enthusiasm, professionalism; do not stalk the contact.</p><p>TIP #7: Contact information a persons name and phone number is often found at the bottom of the job listing. A processing center makes follow-up more difficult but not impossible.</p><p>Tip #8: By law all federal jobs must be publicly posted. Short posting periods could (but not always) indicate a strong internal candidate. Longer postings could mean budgetary continuance or a call for a large cadre of new hires over time.</p></li><li><p> CLEARANCEMost government job offers are not final until the candidate has passed a thorough clearance or background check process.</p><p>Tip #9: The clearance process can last a few weeks or several months, depending on the position. Have patience, be truthful.</p><p>Tip #10: Many federal positions have strict clearance requirements; drug use, criminal activity, or other infractions can be grounds for automatic disqualification. THIS IS A SERIOUS MATTER. Failing a clearance once makes it extremely unlikely to pass at a later date.</p><p>* A to Z agency index Many agencies do not list internships on or but do post them on their own websites.Use database sort functions: Agency; Pay grade (undergraduates - GS 5, 7; graduate students - GS 5,7, 9); Series (the number connected to a particular job function); Job title (find titles related to majors at; Geography (consider both preference and map with hiring trends). This student page has an explanation of federal internships and a sortable database (see left-hand sidebar) to help you get started. </p><p>**The resume has four sections:Getting StartedExperienceRelated InformationFinishing Up*The KSA is a lot like a cover letter.</p></li></ul>