The Federal Government: Limitless Career Opportunities

By Weaver, Gary | Diversity Employers, October 2004 | Go to article overview

The Federal Government: Limitless Career Opportunities


Weaver, Gary, Diversity Employers


As a college senior, you will face numerous choices and opportunities. During the fall, you will spend time reflecting on what hopefully were wonderful college years, your impending senior year and looking forward to a bright, yet uncertain future in the "real world."

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Finding a career is an important, but sometimes overlooked aspect of students' senior year. When choosing a career, you should look for a position that uses your skills and has potential growth. At a young age of only 21 or 22, this can be difficult, but you have plenty of opportunities, many likely not yet realized.

Almost half the Government workforce will soon be eligible for retirement. This presents a challenge for the Federal Government, and an opportunity for people looking for a career. The opportunity to give back to your country by answering the call to public service is as honorable as any career path available.

Choose the Federal Government to begin your career. It is a multifaceted and diverse entity. The opportunity to work with a diverse group of people, with different backgrounds, as well as the wide variety of career paths available within the Federal Government is unmatched.

If you can think of a type of career you are interested in or feel you possess certain skills for, you will likely be able to find a job within the Federal Government that fits your interests and skills, for there are many careers in Government throughout the country.

As an employee of the Federal Government, I have had opportunities to travel throughout the United States and the world. I have the ability to look for new, and exciting opportunities in the Federal Government if I decide I want a new challenge in life.

The Federal Government also offers stability that few companies can. The economy can be strong like it is today, or weak, but I do not have a significant fear of losing my job. The Federal Government is not going anywhere.

Working for the Federal Government offers you many benefits. Working for the Government, you have an opportunity to travel, assist and meet new people and work with other federal and local agencies and organizations. You have plenty of opportunities to be innovative and excel in your career goals, and the Federal Government offers excellent benefits in education, health, life insurance, retirement, vacation and leave.

I would encourage anyone interested in working for a particular Federal agency to access that agency's website for more information. Career fairs also offer an opportunity to meet representatives of different agencies in person. This can be another valuable way to find the right career path within the Federal Government.

Where You Can Get Started

Job openings are posted on the Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) USAJOBS website at www.usajobs.gov. This is the primary web site used by nearly all Government agencies to list job announcements. It includes a broad array of information and links on Government employment. Applicants can search the site by agency, location, type of job, salary, etc. The site includes an easy-to-use resume builder, and allows you to sign up for e-mail notification of new job postings that meet your criteria. Additional information can also be found on OPM's website: www.opm.gov.

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Although the multi-page job announcements and complex application process can be intimidating, it is not as difficult as it first looks. The biggest challenge is completing your first application. Because of the requirement for a security check, the hiring process can be lengthy. Consequently, it's a good idea to apply before you graduate or work an interim or part-time job while your application is pending.

Most Government agencies use a competitive hiring process to carefully and systematically evaluate applicants based on experience, education, specific knowledge, skills and abilities. …

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