Information about Opportunities in the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State
Here are some student program opportunities that are either open for application now…or will be very soon. Most of these opportunities will have deadlines in early-mid fall (some even earlier). Student programs are a great way to get your foot in the door at the State Department. In fact, 41% of all Foreign Service Officers (FSO)s hired in FY20 had previously participated in a U.S. government student program. Furthermore, a whopping 76% of all Pickering and Rangel Fellows hired in 2020 had done the same. While it’s not essential to complete a student program to successfully become a U.S. Diplomat, it certainly improves your odds. You are encouraged to apply early, broadly, and often. These programs are competitive, but you’ll never be chosen if you don’t apply.
Here are some of the opportunities:
Pickering/Rangel Fellowships – In my opinion, these are our most valuable opportunities. The application period is open now to anyone who plans on attending graduate school next fall (i.e. exploring and applying to graduate programs this fall). If selected as a Fellow, this program provides financial support of up to $42k/year for graduate school related expenses, two paid internships during two consecutive summers (one domestic, one abroad), tons of mentorship and support, and a guaranteed job as a U.S. Foreign Service Officer upon graduation (with a five year work commitment). Please click the links below to see the Thomas Pickering Fellowship and Charles Rangel Fellowship Programs flyers for more information about these two programs.
Deadlines: Pickering (9/22/2021); Rangel (9/29/2021)
THOMAS R. PICKERING GRADUATE FOREIGN AFFAIRS FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM
U.S. Foreign Service Internship Programs (USFSIP) – This merit and need-based opportunity is open to rising Sophomores and Juniors in undergrad. The application period should open very soon (like the 3rd or 4th week of August)…and it will only stay open about 7-10 days once it is announced. Selectees will receive two paid internships during two consecutive summers (one domestic, one abroad). Please see link to the USFSIP flyer for more information. U.S. Foreign Service Internship Programs Flyer (USFSIP)
U.S. Department of State Student Internship Program – This is our biggest program. However, at least for now, it is an unpaid internship. Students can apply for Summer, Fall or Spring Semester internships. They work 32-40 hours a week at a domestic office or overseas Embassy or Consulate. Due to COVID, the past few cycles of these internships have all been virtual, and the Spring 2022 cycle will be virtual as well. There hasn’t been a decision yet about the Summer 2022 cycle. Please check out the Student Programs by clicking the link for more information. U.S. Department of State Student Internship Program
Pathways Programs – There are three Pathways programs that are paid student program opportunities that provide a job path to the Civil Service (domestic-based positions). The three are: Pathways Internships, the Recent Graduate Program, and the Presidential Management Fellowship. There was a FB Live webinar about all three of these programs that you can access here. More information on these are also covered in the Student Programs link above.