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US Department of State Interview Questions

Updated 4 Feb, 2015
Updated 4 Feb, 2015
82 Interview Reviews

Interview Experience

Interview Experience

79%
12%
8%

Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview

62%
27%
4%

Interview Difficulty

3.2
Average

Interview Difficulty

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Candidate Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online – interviewed at US Department of State.

    Interview Details

    Apply 6 months ahead of start date on USAjobs. You do not need any connections or networking, which is really nice. Got emails from the bureaus I was interested in, Brasilia and Lisbon. Scheduled a phone interview for the crack of dawn. Language skills are a massive plus as well as a background of volunteer work. If you really want the internship apply to one of the less popular areas like smaller European countries or even better Africa.

    Interview Questions
    • What do you know about the position/Department of State? (Question wasnt meant to be an "interview" question though)   Answer Question
    • We have a native Portuguese speaker here who will speak with you to gauge your fluency...   View Answer
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  2.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at US Department of State.

    Interview Details

    Pretty straightforward. Applied on USA Jobs and heard back in a few months. Had a phone interview and then got my COE. I then waited a few months to get my security clearance, and once received, I was off running.

    Interview Questions
    • If you had a few minutes with the Secretary of State, what would you say are the challenges facing U.S. Diplomacy today?   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    ICASS Administrative Support Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at US Department of State.

    Interview Details

    I sent in my application via USAJobs, and I was contacted after two weeks to set up a phone interview. My interviewer clearly did not read my resume. The interview stopped after I mentioned I had not previously used SharePoint. I was discouraged, particularly because I explained that I managed projects and developed websites in my previous positions. It wasn't going to be a good match.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Easy Interview
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  5.  

    Foreign Affairs Officer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Most of the jobs in the gs 12-14 range are pre-cooked for people already. Still it is worth taking a chance but dont be too disappointed. Jobs can be pulled and readvertized until the right person gets it. But for about 30 to 40 percent of the jobs there is no internal candidate.

    Interview Questions
    • Please explain how x on your resume meets the goals of the job   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    Very difficult to negotiate - they have sops which determine what they will offer.
    Accepted Offer
    Difficult Interview
  6.  

    Foreign Service Officer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Written test, essay, interview, medical and security clearances. Multi-step process took almost a year. Had to travel to DC for the interview on my own dime. Lots of competition. I was prepared for the interview and made it through to a job offer on my first try. Process was fair and now is a point of bonding among my colleagues.

    Interview Questions
    • Need to provide examples and back them up with details   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    Take it or leave it
    Accepted Offer
  7.  

    Passport Specialist Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through other source. The process took 12+ monthsinterviewed at US Department of State.

    Interview Details

    6+ months, no interview. Contingent offer based on passing security clearance. Started within a month of security clearance.

    Some colleagues that were interviewed had to go through two rounds with an interview panel.

    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation, federal. Except you can negotiate the starting grade. I didn't have to.
    Accepted Offer
    Easy Interview
  8.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Three interviews. They were fairly easy asking basic questions about the department and my knowledge of international affairs. I found them to be very welcoming and it seemed they wanted to choose me but were being very formal.

    Negotiation Details
    Its an internship so....
    Accepted Offer
  9.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online – interviewed at US Department of State.

    Interview Details

    Apply via USAJobs; it's fairly specific, but beyond the brochure it isn't necessarily clear what the position will entail. I had a special website I was able to look at, which was a gigantic help, but that is far from true for other interns, especially in more obscure offices. The interview was fairly straightforward.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    FSO Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university – interviewed at US Department of State.

    Interview Details

    The hiring process is ardous and long. The written exam is meritorious, but it seems the oral exams are completely arbitrary! Once you are hired, then the security clearance could take a while. Finally, you get your medical clearance check, and it may turn out that you are not qualified for the job due to medical reasons.

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    none
    Accepted Offer
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY (US)
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY (US)
    Application Details

    I applied online – interviewed at US Department of State.

    Interview Details

    The application process is pretty rigorous, as are all security clearance positions. After you complete your initial application package, you will be contacted for a phone interview. My phone interview was actually pretty brief - they already knew they wanted me and just wanted to verify that I was still interested in the position. Of course, I said yes. The security clearance paperwork following the interview was the most tedious - you really need to know every place you've ever lived at and the dates, etc., as well as everywhere outside of the U.S. that you have travelled, the dates, whom you were with, etc.

    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

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