Federal Employment Programs Offer Enticements to Students and Recent Grads

With an aging workforce and hundreds of thousands of retirements looming, the U.S. Civil Service offers many programs designed to entice Millennials to federal employment, hoping that some recruits will spend their careers working for their country.
Recruitment programs targeting young people are available at hundreds of federal departments and agencies, from the State Department and NASA to the National Institutes of Health and the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Here’s a roundup of some of the top programs, many offering both financial and professional-development advantages to young people entering the labor force.

Office of Personnel Management Fair Chance Rule

“Fair-chance hiring policies … are a common-sense way to help formerly incarcerated people re-enter the workforce and contribute to our society.”
An Office of Personnel Management rule finalized in early December requires that for most federal job openings, the hiring department or agency cannot ask about applicants’ criminal or credit histories until a conditional job offer has been made.
The purpose of the rule, which follows President Obama’s announcement on the issue, is to promote fair consideration in hiring of job candidates who possess the knowledge, skills, abilities and motivation to qualify for a position but have a criminal record or bad credit that might bias human resources or hiring managers against their applications.
The new rule parallels actions that many municipalities have taken to “ban the box” that requires applicants to disclose with a check mark any criminal record.


This much we know: President Trump has ordered a limited federal hiring freeze and a broad review of the federal workforce with an eye toward reducing headcount.
But we don’t know many specifics regarding potential furloughs or layoffs in individual agencies, programs, missions and budgets.
True, given the president’s emphasis on immigration, homeland security and defense, a number of federal agencies are likely to maintain or even expand their workforces. DoD, ICE and other departments and agencies were enumerated in the president’s executive order as exceptions to the hiring freeze. Employees of the Environmental Protection Agency, on the other hand, know that they need to prepare for the possibility that their positions will be eliminated.