Friday, October 29, 2010

And so it begins

After 5 weeks of waiting since my OA, my file has officially been opened with Diplomatic Security. I'm not entirely sure what this means, or what they were doing before- you would think simply opening a file could be done immediately upon learning there's someone who will need to be investigate- but I'm glad to see some movement on that front. I was given a "target completing date" of 12/27/10, which is standard DS process: 60 days from opening the file. My scientific and thorough research of yahoo groups have led be to conclude that the chances of actually meeting this target date are incredibly slim, but at least I know that in the next couple months they will be finally working on my case.

I'm still waiting to be contacted for the first interview. Hopefully this will happen sometime in the next week or two.

I just learned that two friends of mine will be starting A-100 in January, and I'm super excited and jealous. It's fabulous to see them moving on to this stage, and both of them took about 8/9 months from OA to A-100. If I could meet that timetable I would be stoked!

So keep fingers crossed that I get a speedy clearance and follow in their footsteps!

Monday, October 11, 2010

From the A-100 yahoo group

A helpful guide for understanding the process of becoming a foreign service office. Click on the image to enlarge.

Timeline so far

So how long did it take me to get here? Months.

I decided to take the Foreign Service written exam in early March 2010. By the end of March, I had heard that I passed. Hurrah!

My personal narratives were due in April. I found out I passed this, by getting my invitation to the oral assessment, in June.

My MA dissertation was due on the 15th of September, so I made sure to schedule my OA after that. On Sept 23rd, I took and passed the OA.

Conditional offer of employment!

Now just need to wait, and wait, and wait, while my security and medical clearances get processed.

I'm hoping to be on the register by mid-2011 and called for A-100 before the end of 2011, though I know that may be a bit optimistic, given the amount of time my clearance is going to take with all the foreign travel I've done. But cross your fingers for me!
Usually I'm not much of a fan of people who use blogs as personal diaries to tell the world what they did each day. Yet here I am, about to do almost just that.

This blog is going to document my path towards becoming a Foreign Service Office for my own reference and for anyone else interested in learning what I'm going to or what to expect in their own journey to JO status.

Obviously, I am not yet a part of the Foreign Service, employed by the State Department, or in any other official capacity a part of the US government. This is a purely personal blog to reflect my own experience with this process.