Student Trainee (Foreign Affairs) Pathways Internship Experience Program (IEP)

U.S. Department of State
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
  • Experience
    Early Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Apr 14

Position description

This vacancy announcement will be open from April 14, 2021 to April 19, 2021 or when 50 applications have been received. The vacancy will close on whichever day the first of these conditions are met. If the application limit is reached on the same day the announcement opened, the open and close date will be the same. Candidates are encouraged to read the entire announcement before submitting their application packages.


Learn more about this agency



This position is assigned to the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO). The mission of CSO is to anticipate, prevent, and respond to conflict that undermines U.S. national interests. Our three lines of effort (LOEs) support this mission by focusing on different aspects of the conflict cycle: 1) strategic prevention; 2) conflict resolution; and 3) security sector stabilization. We implement our LOEs through three key functions; 1) deploying Stabilization Advisors; 2) harnessing data analytics; and 3) leading, informing, and implementing policy and programs on conflict prevention and stabilization.

As a Student Trainee (Foreign Affairs) GS-05, you will:

  • Receive training and performs basic assignments in the organization's mission and operations, including pertinent laws and governing regulations, their application and enforcement; practices employed in the field; and the means for evaluating and securing compliance with policy or legal requirements.
  • Assist in the preparation of, or prepares, presentations related to work assignments. The presentations are well researched and logically organized; demonstrates the ability to communicate clearly when speaking by presenting facts, issues, and positions that convey the intended information with the appropriate diplomacy and emphasis.
  • Assist and observe higher-graded officers in conducting internal and/or external investigations, inquiries, or audits related to national security matters where neglect, action, or inaction could cause significant or serious damage to the national security. 
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

This Year-Round position requires at least 30 hours per week between the hours of 6:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time (ET), Monday-Friday.


Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status


Promotion Potential



Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. Citizenship is required.
  • Incumbent will be subject to random drug testing.
  • Verification of employment eligibility in the United States is required.
  • Must be at least 16 years of age by the closing date of the announcement.
  • Verification from the academic institution confirming acceptance into a qualifying program.
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher on a scale of 4.0.
  • Enrolled or accepted for enrollment at a qualifying educational institution with at least a half-time course load.
  • Must maintain student eligibility for duration of internship.
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a Top Secret security clearance.
  • All transcripts or educational documentation must reflect a projected graduation date after the Spring 2022 semester.


GS-5: Completion of 4 academic years of post-high school leading to a bachelor’s degree AND be currently accepted to/enrolled in a qualifying degree or certificate program.

Degree: major or equivalent, or a combination of courses totaling at least 24 semester hours, in international law and international relations, political science, economics, history, sociology, geography, social or cultural anthropology, law, statistics, or in the humanities; or 12 semester hours in one of the above disciplines and 12 semester hours in statistics/quantitative methods.



An individual who needs to complete less than the equivalent of half an academic/vocational or technical course-load immediately prior to graduating is still considered a student for the purposes of this Program.

The Pathways Internship Program targets students accepted for enrollment or currently enrolled in a qualifying educational program in an accredited institution, on a full or half-time basis with paid opportunities to work in agencies and explore Federal careers while still in school.

Applicants must meet the definition of "student" in order to be considered for this opportunity.

At the successful conclusion of the program, interns may be eligible for non-competitive conversion to a Federal career or career-conditional position in the competitive service.

Conversions to the competitive service are not guaranteed. 

Pathways candidates must meet the DOS qualification standards applicable to the position being filled. All applicants must meet the qualifications by the closing date of this announcement. 

Cumulative GPA of 2.0 at time of application and must maintain at least a 2.0 GPA throughout the entire Pathways Internship appointment.

Degree does not have to be related to the position/series; however to be eligible, candidate must meet the OPM qualification standards for the position to which the Intern may be converted.

Certificate Requirements:

Undergraduate certificates must contain a minimum of 30 semester hours or 45 quarter hours.

Graduate certificates must contain a minimum of 18 semester hours or 27 quarter hours.

For study at a business or technical school, 36 weeks of study (20+ classroom hours per week) is comparable to 1 academic year above high school.  

The Department of State no longer accepts certificates that are credited with Continuing Education Units (CEUs). 

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Education completed in foreign colleges or universities may be used to meet the education requirements if you can show that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States.  It is your responsibility to provide such evidence at the time of application. Late submissions of proof of accreditation will not be accepted.  Click on the link for a list of accredited organizations recognized as specializing in interpretation of foreign education credentials.

Student means an individual accepted for enrollment or enrolled and seeking a degree (diploma, certificate, etc.) in a qualifying educational institution, on a full or half-time basis (as defined by the institution in which the student is enrolled), including awardees of the Harry S. Truman Foundation Scholarship Program under Public Law 93-842. Students need not be in actual physical attendance, so long as all other requirements are met. An individual who needs to complete less than the equivalent of half an academic/vocational or technical course-load immediately prior to graduating is still considered a student for purposes of this Program.

Application instructions

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