The Pathways Program provides paths to Federal careers for students and recent graduates. The Pathways programs consist of the Internship Program, the Recent Graduate Program and the Presidential Management Fellows Program. (Also see https://www.usajobs.gov/StudentsAndGrads)
- The Internship Program is designed to provide students with opportunities to explore Federal careers while still in school. Students may be hired on a temporary basis for up to one year (NTE Intern) or for an indefinite period (Indefinite Intern).
- The Recent Graduates Program is available to individuals who have completed qualifying degree or certificate programs in the previous two years. Qualified veterans may have an extended application period due to military service.
- The Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program is for individuals who have completed an advanced degree within the past two years.
What you need to know:
- You will need to complete an application for those positions that match your academic or career goals the specific locations you are willing to work at.
- Orientation, mentoring, and training plans are requirements of the programs.
- You will need to attach the following documents as part of your application:
- Cover letter ( optional)
- Proof of enrollment or acceptance of enrollment
- Transcripts (unofficial copy is acceptable if all required information is included)
- If claiming Veterans’ Preference – forms DD-214 and SF-15 (if applicable)
NOTE: More details on the required information for all of these attachments to your applications are provide at the end of this Fact Sheet. You should completely review the vacancy announcement to verify that all requirements are met and carefully review your application before final submission.
What can you do in advance to prepare?
- Get familiar with USAJobs. See “How to Apply for a Job on USAJobs” at: http://www.fs.fed.us/fsjobs/USAJOBS_Instructions.pdf
- Create an account on USAJobs website. https://my.usajobs.gov/Account/Account
- Use the USAJobs tool to create a profile and resume
- Post all relevant documents to your USAJob account, i.e. resume, current transcripts, letters of recommendations, and veterans preference documentation
- Sign-up for e-mail notifications for Forest Service job postings using the “save search” function in your USAJobs profile.
- We will use the Twitter hashtag : #FSstudentjobs to provide periodic updates on our up-coming and current Pathways announcements.
- Go to the Forest Service website get information about work sites at: http://www.fs.fed.us/maps/products/guide-national-forests09.pdf
- You can learn more about how to apply for Pathways opportunities on USAJobs through an Office of Personnel Management video on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQzXYVqBmZg&feature=youtu.be
- Outreaches – The Forest Service uses a pre-announcement or “outreach” process first before we formally advertise jobs. This is an important step for us as the responses we get help us determine how to advertise the job. At least once a week check the outreach database that houses all the jobs we are outreaching for. If you find an outreach of interest, make sure to fill out the form and send it in to the hiring manager. Link to the outreach database: https://fsoutreach.gdcii.com/Outreach
- Call the Hiring Manager – This is likely the single most important thing you need to do when applying for a Forest Service job. Hiring manager’s contact information is found on the outreach for each job (see above). The Federal application process is highly centralized and we can receive upwards of 200-400 applicants per job. If you don’t stand out, you won’t. Do not simply submit an application and hope for the best. Hiring decisions are still made at the local level and influenced greatly by the local hiring manager. You need to call or better yet, stop by and visit, with the hiring manager. Be prepared to ask questions about the job, the location, housing, specific skill sets they are looking for, etc. Also be prepared to tell them about yourself, why you want the job, what your future goals are, etc. Hiring managers are also great people to ask questions about USAjobs.gov You can find a listing of Forest Service districts at: http://www.fs.fed.us/contactus/regions.shtml
Note: The Presidential Management Fellows Program (PMF) application process is managed by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), and most of the information above does not apply to the PMF program. OPM posts PMF opportunities, once a year, usually in the fall. Find Information about this process at: http://www.pmf.gov .
Information on Required Documents:
- Cover letter – optional (one-page maximum)
- Resume that includes the following information: 1) job information for which you are applying; 2) personal contact information; 3) education which includes degree, coursework and GPA; 4) work/volunteer experience including the work schedule and hours worked per week as well as dates of employment; and title, series and grade, if applicable; 5) supervisors phone number and e-mail address for each work period listed and whether or not we may contact them for reference checks; and, 6) other qualifications.
- Proof of enrollment or acceptance of enrollment: In the form of official letters, records or transcripts issued from a high school, vocational institution, college or university. The documentation provided must be issued from an authorized source (example: university registrar’s office).
- Transcripts: An unofficial copy is sufficient with the application; however, if selected, an official college transcript will be required. Transcripts MUST include the student’s full name, name of the school, current GPA/academic standing, past and current coursework, and degree program. If your school’s unofficial transcripts or documentation does not provide all necessary information listed above, you should include additional academic documentation that meets the requirements.
- Acceptance Letter: Students who have graduated or are expected to graduate during the fall term must also include an official acceptance letter along with their transcripts to verify they are continuing their education.
- If claiming Veterans’ Preference, include DD-214 (MEMBER 4 COPY). Veterans claiming 10 point preference must also submit an SF-15 Application for 10-point Veteran Preference. Current Active Duty members must submit a certification of expected discharge or release from active duty under honorable conditions dated within the last 120 days.
NOTE: You should completely review the vacancy announcement to verify that all requirements are met and carefully review your application before final submission.