In 2018, I attended an event at my public university where a large percentage of the student body had transferred from a local community college. The event was one of a few organized each year to connect students from underrepresented demographics with professionals in the security sphere. Many, like myself, are first-generation college students and first-generation Americans.
If federal agencies want to cast a wide net to catch unique skills and perspectives, they must employ a more effective strategy to communicate to prospective students how to navigate the obstacle course of entering the public sector.
We sat facing a panel of representatives who came to speak with us about working in national security. In the staggering discussion of acronyms, vague job descriptions, unpaid internships, prestigious fellowships, and nonchalant paths to success, it became clear that the surest way into public service was through personal connections, financial flexibility and an insane amount of luck.
Read the full article from the Military Times.
More from CNAS
Sharper: National Security Workforce
A capable workforce is central to the effectiveness of any government, military, or industry. Opaque processes and standards that lag behind the private sector contribute to r...
By Anna Pederson, Taren Sylvester & Charles Horn
The Future of Civilians in National Security
The federal government needs people with specific skills, knowledge, and experience in the national security workforce. While there are qualified individuals who want to serve...
By Katherine L. Kuzminski, Nathalie Grogan & Celina Pouchet
Sharper: Climate Security
Climate change is a force multiplier for geopolitical instability and operational readiness, the stressors of which profoundly impact national security priorities and resource...
Virtual platforms drive equity in national security community
Military, Veterans and Society Program Director Katherine Kuzminski joins Government Matters to discuss how virtual platforms drive equity in the national security community. ...
By Katherine L. Kuzminski