Nearly one year to the day since taking the Foreign Service Officers Test (the written exam), Mr. Crab received the good news today that I am now officially on the US Foreign Service Consular Register. For the layperson, that means I have passed all the hurdles including medical and security background checks and "Final Suitability Review." Now it's just a matter of waiting for an seat in the A-100 Foreign Service Orientation Course.
So what's next? A-100! Named for the classroom where the course was originally held, A-100 is a 5-week, introduction to the Foreign Service. At the end of the class, there will be a "Flag Day" ceremony where we find out where in the world I will be stationed for my first tour. Then I'll head to Consular Affairs training, which is six weeks long. Finally, if I end up in a country where I do not speak the language, I'll be sent to language school, which could last anywhere from 3 months to 2 YEARS depending on the language. Only after all the training is complete are JOs, or Junior Officers, shipped abroad to begin their new careers as member of the Bureau of Consular Affairs.
Click here to learn more about the work of the Foreign Service's Bureau of Consular Affairs.
The Foreign Service is HIRING! Click here to learn more about careers in the US Foreign Service and Department of State. And no, I don't get any sort of bonus or finders fee for this plug!
4/14: Passed FSOA. Score 5.40, Consular Track.
4/17: Security background investigation launched
5/1: Veterans preference bonus points added. New score = 5.575
5/5 & 5/7: Medical appointments at STATE MED. Class 1 clearance issued in-person on 5/7.
5/10: DSS in-person interview (three hours long)
5/16: Medical Clearance hardcopy arrives in mail
6/18: Security case manager requests a final piece of information.
7/17: Took Spanish phone test. Flunked (I know, can you believe that?).
7/17: Background security investigation completed
7/21: Adjudication process initiated
10/21: Security clearance granted
11/3: Final Suitability granted. Placed on Consular track.
Next: Awaiting "The Call," the official invitation to attend the A-100 Orientation Course.