Federal Internships Find and Apply for Summer 2011 October 20, 2010
Presenters Your Hosts: Jennifer Close Amanda Davis
Your Panelists: Michael Mrozowski •
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Julie Saad •
Office of Personnel Management
Laura Williams •
Department of State
Housekeeping Items We will open up the phone lines for questions at the end of the call. In the meantime, we encourage you to type questions into the Q&A box. The recording of today’s presentation, as well as the accompanying handouts, will be emailed to all registered participants early next week. • This information will NOT be posted on Partnership Connect.
Handouts Finding a Federal Internship 2010-11 Sample Internships Resources Handout Department of State Internships Guide
Agenda Partnership for Public Service Why Federal Internships? Now What? How to Apply
Next Steps Q&A
Partnership for Public Service Nonpartisan and nonprofit organization Good government starts with good people Revitalize our federal government by inspiring a new generation to serve and by transforming the way government works
PROFILED: Real Federal Interns
Facts about Federal Internships Excellent pay and benefits High levels of responsibility Valuable work experience Ability to make a difference
Flexible schedules Training and professional development
Opportunities to travel
Straight from the Source ď‚Ť What unique opportunities and experiences do students at your agency have as part of their internships? ď‚Ť What do you believe are the most important or best benefits associated with federal internships?
Now What? Do your homework Start your search
Do Your Homework Legislative
Agency 1 Agency 1
Agency 2 Agency 2
Agency 3 Agency 3
Agency 4 Agency 4
Independent Agencies and Government Corporations
Tip: Start your federal internship search during the early fall!
Start Your Search: Student Programs Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP) What: • Similar to a traditional internship • Summer or short-term experience
Who: • Students in high school, college, vocational or graduate school
More information: • Always paid • Length of the experience is set by the agency • Not required to be posted on USAJOBS.gov
Start Your Search: Student Programs Student Career Experience Program (SCEP) What: • A student works in an area related to what she or he is studying
Who: • Undergraduate- or graduate-level students • An agency must form an agreement with the student’s institution
More information: • Always paid • If a student works 640 hours, she or he may be eligible to be hired into an agency non-competitively • Not required to be posted on USAJOBS.gov
Start Your Search: Resources Use these resources to target agencies of interest: • Makingthedifference.org • Wherethejobsare.org
• Bestplacestowork.org • USAJOBS.gov • USA.gov • Individual agency websites
Start Your Search: Resources Third-party internship providers School-based “in Washington” programs The Washington Center Washington Semester Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) • National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO) • Washington Internships for Native Students (WINS) • • • •
Straight from the Source What types of opportunities do you have available for students this summer?
When is the deadline to apply? Where do you post your internships?
Get Ready to Apply Familiarize yourself with job vacancy announcements
Build your federal résumé and update your nonfederal résumé Prepare for assessments
Job Vacancy Announcements
Résumé Tips Create an account on USAJOBS.gov •
Store up to 5 federal résumés, each tailored to a different internship opportunity! Upload your non-federal résumé to the Saved Documents folder
Carefully review the job vacancy announcement or position description •
Focus on the “duties” or “responsibilities” section, and customize your résumé accordingly by identifying and including key words and phrases
Federal and Non-Federal Résumés FEDERAL RESUMES
Prepare for Assessments
Application Questionnaires Essays (KSAs)
Application Questionnaires Length: 25-125+ questions Type: Varies and can include yes/no questions as well as those meant to determine your level of experience in different areas Tip: Preview questions using a link found in the job vacancy announcement
Federal Essays What: Knowledge, Skills and Abilities essays (KSAs) Length: ½ page to a full-page in length Tips: Address key words and phrases mentioned in the position description, use rich and substantive examples, tie your personal experiences to each KSA, focus on outcomes to which you directly contributed, and avoid acronyms
Specifically address each KSA in your application, providing examples of how your experiences have prepared you for a role.
Straight from the Source What do you look for in résumés? Which assessment tools does your agency use? What do you look for in cover letters? What other advice do you have for students filling out federal internship applications?
Impact of Hiring Reform on Your Application As per a memorandum issued by President Obama in May, agencies are required to implement the following changes by November 1, 2010: • • • •
Eliminate KSAs from the initial application process Allow individuals to apply with a résumé and cover letter Improve the quality and speed of hiring Notify applicants about their status during the process
Visit opm.gov/hiringreform for additional information
Next Steps Stay on top of your application Prepare for federal interviews Navigate the security clearance process
Stay on Top of Your Application USAJOBS.gov • Track your status using the Application Manager
Agency Websites • Contact the agency within two weeks after submitting your application to confirm its status
Prepare for Federal Interviews To make the most of your federal interview, be sure to do the following: • • • •
Do your homework; Prepare answers to common questions in advance; Have questions ready to ask interviewers; and Dress the part.
Bonus: Arrive early and demonstrate your passion for public service!
Security Clearances Many internships will require security clearances Begin gathering relevant information now • Check out the SF-85 and SF-86 to determine what you should be collecting
Tip: Be honest!
Straight from the Source How do you prefer that students follow up with your agency after submitting their applications?
Do you have any advice for students that are preparing for federal interviews? Do you have any recommendations for students going through the security clearance process?
Don’t forget … Fill out our brief survey online! Visit makingthedifference.org for more information about finding and applying for federal opportunities. Still have questions? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
THANK YOU FOR JOINING US! Good luck with your search.