Getting hired as an FBI agent

Criminal Justice Articles

Getting hired as an FBI agent

Working for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is really a career, it will last your whole life barring any unusual circumstances. To become an FBI agent, you must be between 23 and 36 years of age. It's a good idea to start young if you want to work in the FBI. Also, you have to be a United States citizen with a minimum of three years' work experience. However, you cannot go directly into the FBI after completing high school. To have the opportunity of becoming an FBI agent, you have to attend an accredited college. Just like most colleges or big corporations, the FBI prefers candidates who are actively involved in extracurricular activities. FBI Agent salaries vary by years of experience but can range from $45,000.00 to $121,000.00 per year.

To qualify, you must apply under one of the FBI's entry programs: law, computer science, diversified, language, or accounting. Each program has different requirements and the FBI prioritize applications based upon their needs at the time.

If you wish to apply under the Accounting Program, you must be eligible to take a Certified Public Accountant examination and have a bachelor's degree in accounting. To qualify for the FBI's Law Program, you must have at least a Juris Doctor or JD degree from an accredited law school. A JD is a basic law degree that requires three years of study to obtain. To qualify for the FBI's Language Program, you must have a bachelor's degree in any field. More importantly, you have to demonstrate competency in a language that the FBI requires. You will also have to pass a language proficiency exam.

For the FBI's Computer Science Program, you must have a bachelor's degree in one of three fields: electrical engineering, computer science, or information technology. As for the Diversified Program, it's a diversified program! You must have at least a bachelor's degree in any field and show that you have at least three years of work experience. However, if you have an advanced degree and only two years of work experience, you will still quality for the program.

Once you've achieved all that, you will also have to pass an extensive background check. If you are hired, you should be ready for regular drug tests. However, you don't have to accumulate previous law enforcement experience to join the FBI. If you are truly interested, you can go to the FBI's website where you can fill out a preliminary application. After you have submitted your application, you will be notified that there is a written test as well as more paperwork to fill out.

Passing that initial test doesn't guarantee you a place. The FBI only hires somewhere between 500 and 750 people a year. When you compare that with the 10,000 applications they typically receive in a year, you can see how tough it is to even get your foot in the door. You really have to find ways to make yourself stand out! If you are willing to go that extra mile, you just may find yourself working for the FBI and reaping the many rewards of such a career.

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