Preparing for my OA

As most of my family already knows, I applied to join the Foreign Service last December. Since I’m eating and breathing preparation for my upcoming interview right now, I thought I’d explain the job and hiring process a bit.

For those who don’t know, the Foreign Service is the branch of the U.S. Department of State working in embassies and consulates around the world. The Service is made up of officers who handle everything from top-level diplomacy to processing visas, as well as specialists who keep the embassies up and running (HR, IT, Management, Accounting, etc). I’m applying to be a Security Engineering Officer specialist, which means that I would be the tech whiz keeping the security infrastructure up-and-running in embassies worldwide.

The latest news is that I passed QEP last month and am scheduled for an Oral Assessment (OA) in D.C. at the end of this month. The process is pretty intense – I have to take a proctored writing exam and two consecutive rounds of interviews. All of this at 7:30am on a Monday!

I have my fingers crossed that I’ll get in, although even if I pass the OA, I still have to get Medical and Security clearances, then wait for a slot to open up.  To prepare, I’m focusing on interview practice questions, writing sample essays, and giving myself a refresher on basic electronics. I’ve also been reading a lot of blogs (I added links to my favorites on the right of this page) and read a few books on the nitty-gritty of U.S. foreign policy. Here’s hoping all my studying will pay off…if not, at least I’ll still get to spend a long weekend checking out the D.C. nightlife 🙂

~ by theuncommonlife on February 16, 2010.

2 Responses to “Preparing for my OA”

  1. Good luck on the OA!

  2. Thanks! My fingers are crossed…

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