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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2003 > February
Media Note
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
February 25, 2003


Don't Miss Your Chance to be the "Face of America to the World:" Registration Deadline for the Foreign Service Written Exam Approaching

Registration for the 2003 Foreign Service Written Exam will close in early March. Since the Exam will only be given once during 2003, Americans interested in serving their country as Foreign Service Officers should sign up now. To register, visit the Department's recruitment web site, www.careers.state.gov, which contains information on Foreign Service careers, as well as interactive pages that allow prospective candidates to determine their suitability for a career in the Foreign Service.

The U.S. Department of State continues to seek public service-minded U.S. citizens from all walks of life who reflect the skills and diversity of the nation.

Being a Foreign Service Officer is an exciting job with fresh challenges every day. Serving in 163 countries around the world as well as in Washington DC., a Foreign Service Officer might one minute be orchestrating a visit by the Vice President of the United States and the next, consulting on a major capital improvement project. It is a career for those who want to make a difference.

The Foreign Service offers five career tracks:   management/administrative, economic, political, consular, and public diplomacy. While we continue to recruit for all of these, our greatest need is in the management/administrative area.

Management Officers ultimately become the Chief Operating Officers at all U.S. embassies, consulates and other diplomatic missions. They control multimillion-dollar budgets, hire and direct mission-critical personnel, and manage large real estate portfolios. Management Officers come from a large variety of backgrounds, including former administrators, educators or corporate professionals who have answered the call to public service.

Registration deadlines are March 12 for those intending to take the Exam in the U.S. and March 5 for those intending to take it at one of our many overseas locations.

Here are some facts to keep in mind about the Foreign Service Written Exam:

The Foreign Service Exam is challenging for everyone.   It is important to order and practice with the study guide and follow the standard advice for any major exam by arriving ready and rested for the exam.

The Department of State needs all types of people and skills.   The U.S. Department of State has hundreds of opportunities for U.S. citizens interested in serving on the front lines of diplomacy. The Foreign Service is not just for political science or international affairs graduates. We need people with backgrounds in subjects from finance to management to security. And we want a workforce that reflects the cultural diversity of America. Beyond taking the exam and joining the Department of State as a Foreign Service Officer, you can also join as a Foreign Service Specialist or Civil Service employee. Log onto www.careers.state.gov and see the variety of opportunities available.

Training for any language or skill you will need.   Early in your career, the Department of State will train you in at least one foreign language. Knowledge of a foreign language is not a prerequisite for joining the Foreign Service (although we particularly welcome candidates who do have language abilities). Extensive training is becoming an integral part of a career at the U.S. Department of State--training in leadership, area studies, and a variety of other skills.

Rewarding careers with benefits you can bank on.   Starting salaries for new Foreign Service Officers range from $36,900 - $66,500. This doesn't even begin to count the generous benefits package that includes health insurance, life insurance, our 401 (k) called the Thrift Savings Program and full pensions for career Foreign Service Officers. To learn more about the rewards and benefits of a career as a Foreign Service Officer please visit our recruitment website www.careers.state.gov.

For more information about becoming a Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State, or to register for the Foreign Service Exam, please visit the Department of State recruitment web site: www.careers.state.gov.

Released on February 25, 2003

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