FBI Cyber/Tech Careers Information Session

Article by Michael Kimball-Bryant, UW Bothell
Photo source: multimedia.fbi.gov
March 2017
In late February, two FBI representatives visited the University of Washington Bothell’s campus for an information session on cyber security careers within their agency. A recruiter from the FBI Headquarters (HQ) Washington D.C. office and a Computer Scientist from the Seattle field office met with 30 undergraduate and graduate students eager to learn more about FBI career opportunities. The representatives collected resumes of those interested in the Computer Scientist and Information Technology Specialist - Forensic Examiner positions. The HQ representative noted that it was a great experience, and “students were also able to ask questions about the hiring process and the specific work our Computer Scientists do out in our Field Offices. We greatly enjoyed the opportunity to speak with students and allow them to consider a career in federal service where their education can be used to defend the nation.” 
Computer science students can generally expect to make a great salary after graduating and finding work in the private sector. Both FBI employees shared that their agency attracts candidates who are mission-oriented more so than those motivated by money. The Computer Scientist from the Seattle field office acknowledged that he may not make as much as friends and colleagues who work in the private sector, but he also isn’t expected to work upward of 60 hours a week. He maintains an equitable work/life balance, working 40 to 45 hours a week, at most. Most importantly, he indicated that he gets to see the impact of his work when a cyber-criminal is brought to justice. 
Students were able to hear directly from the Computer Scientist regarding the details on some of his previous work, giving them an insightful perspective in the day of a life of an ethical hacker and government official. The HQ representative was grateful for the chance to partner with UW Bothell and, “provide an information session for students to learn about our many Cyber related careers. We were so glad to provide students a chance to meet one of our local Computer Scientists and allow him to share details on some of his past casework.”