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Becoming a FSO

Wrong: My 2016 FY FSO and FSS Hiring Rate Prediction

Wrong: My 2016 FY FSO and FSS Hiring Rate Prediction

The Department of State Foreign Service hiring numbers for Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 were recently made public, and I was wrong in my prediction. This makes me happy. To recap, in March 2016 I tried to predict what the hiring rates would be. I believed the hiring rates...

FSO Career

Foreign Service Officer Salary:  A Comprehensive Guide

Foreign Service Officer Salary: A Comprehensive Guide

FOREIGN SERVICE OFFICER SALARY: A Comprehensive Guide (2017 Update) The Foreign Service Officer salary is dynamic and ever changing. Though your base salary, pegged to a Washington, D.C. cost of living, remains steady, each country has different allowances. Depending...

FSO Lifestyle

Single Foreign Service Officers: Dropping a Truth Bomb

Single Foreign Service Officers: Dropping a Truth Bomb

This week, Heather, from the blog Adventures Around the World, shares her perspective as a single "solo" Foreign Service Officer. Her story is one shared by many in the Service, but not one readily discussed because of its hard truths. A career in the Foreign Service...

The Complete List

Foreign Service Officer Salary: A Comprehensive Guide

FOREIGN SERVICE OFFICER SALARY: A Comprehensive Guide (2017 Update) The Foreign Service Officer salary is dynamic and ever changing. Though your base salary, pegged to a Washington, D.C. cost of living, remains steady, each country has different allowances. Depending...

Single Foreign Service Officers: Dropping a Truth Bomb

This week, Heather, from the blog Adventures Around the World, shares her perspective as a single "solo" Foreign Service Officer. Her story is one shared by many in the Service, but not one readily discussed because of its hard truths. A career in the Foreign Service...

The Foreign Service Public Diplomacy Officer

The cultural bridge between the U.S./mission and the host country, the Public Diplomacy Foreign Officer is the gatekeeper and promoter of information concerning the U.S. During your career, you may represent a post as the spokesperson, promote student and professional...

The Foreign Service Political Officer

When you think of the Foreign Service, the duties of the Political Officer is the one that comes to mind the most for people. Keeping up with national and international trends that affect the host country, speaking and networking with government officials and subject...

The Foreign Service Management Officer

The ones who keep the embassy or consulate running, the Foreign Service Management Officers are in charge of projects both small and large. Staff leaders, management officers supervise (potentially several) local staff from the beginning, and are trained to be able...

The Foreign Service Economic Officer

The Foreign Service Economic Officer helps strengthen (or minimize) ties between the U.S. and the host country. By working with many different people in and out of government, the Economic Officer seeks out the information that will benefit U.S. business. This can be...

The Foreign Service Consular Officer

For many citizens in overseas countries, the Foreign Service Consular Officer is the principle diplomat they will (ever) interact with. Adjudicators of visas and primary support to U.S. citizens abroad, the Consular Officer must hold a broad range of skills. Unlike...

Wrong: My 2016 FY FSO and FSS Hiring Rate Prediction

The Department of State Foreign Service hiring numbers for Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 were recently made public, and I was wrong in my prediction. This makes me happy. To recap, in March 2016 I tried to predict what the hiring rates would be. I believed the hiring rates...

Department of Sate Diversity Statistics: Sept. 30, 2016

The Department of State recently published its diversity statistics, which allows us to do a comparison between the State Department and the U.S. as a whole! Some Brief History Earlier this year, the "Department of State Operations Authorization and Embassy Security...

The FSOT Simulator: Its Creation Story

Practice for the Foreign Service Officer Test with The FSOT Simulator! I created The FSOT Simulator because what was available for folks to use was lacking. Either it was lacking in the number of questions asked, lacking in utilizing a timing function, lacking in...

The June 2016 FSOT Results

I passed the June 2016 Foreign Service Test! …Finally! For those who have read this blog from the beginning, you will know this was my third attempt at taking it, and finally, third time is the charm. The previous two times I barely missed passing, with the first...

Use Crash Course to Study for the FSOT

Sometimes we really need a crash course on a subject, and luckily there is a free YouTube channel that does this for us. But what really makes it stand out, is how applicable it is to the FSOT! The owners of Crash Course have one thing in mind, to make high quality...

The FY 2016 FSO and FSS Hiring Rates: Prediction

What will the hiring rate be for Foreign Service Officers and Foreign Service Specialists in Fiscal Year 2016? I have reviewed data on the State Department website, and I am ready to make a prediction for the upcoming fiscal year (FY). This is part two of a post I...

FSOT Practice Essay Question Simulator

The Foreign Service Officer Test (FSOT) practice essay simulator was created to help test takers out. If you would like to go directly to the simulator, the link follows. If you would like to know a little more about it and consider a general question I have regarding...

Why do you want to work as a Foreign Service Officer?

Recently I listened for the first time to NPR TED Radio Hour. The title of the show: The Meaning of Work. If you haven’t listened to it, I really do suggest checking it out. It was probably one of the most interesting podcasts I have listened to in a long time and I...

The June 2015 FSOT Results

I held off on writing this post for a few reasons. It is not a fun post to write. I have been communicating with FSOT administrators over the last few weeks regarding the test and wanted there to be an opportunity for follow-up from all parties. A warning now, it is a...

Joining the Foreign Service is Plan B

This has been quite the day… and it’s still going. I’m currently writing to you from inside a plane where we have been sitting on the runway for 45 minutes and counting. Right before take off we were grounded by air traffic control because of an impeding storm of,...

The June FSOT Is In Two Weeks!

The test is in two weeks! Freak out! Really? No, not really. It might be because I have already gone through this process but I am not stressing about the test. Is it because I am 100% confident I will pass this time? Or, is it because I have lost interest in the FSO...

Diplomats in Residence

Part One discusses what the Diplomat in Residence is, Part Two discusses my experience, make sure you read both… and in order! PART ONE So you’ve done your homework, you researched the State Department careers website on what the Foreign Service is all about. You read...

Keeping up With Current Affairs

Keeping up with current affairs is a must. Besides the importance of knowing what events are transpiring throughout the world, it is a necessary use of time in order to pass the Foreign Service Officer Test and be prepared for the steps that follow the exam. In order...

The Career FSO Ambassador: Current Demographics

This post on the career FSO ambassador started out very similarly to the Foreign Service salary guide- to answer a ‘simple’ question that instead led to a deeper content piece. You see, I was trying to determine which Foreign Service cone has led to the most career...

Study for the FSOT in the Shower

After last week’s extensive post on the Foreign Service Officer Salary: A Comprehensive Guide, which if you have not read I highly suggest checking it out, I decided to give you guys a quick read today. All right, this is an easy to implement and highly actionable...

Seven News Apps for the FSOT

It’s important to keep up to date up to date on the news, politics, and global affairs of the day. Not only does this assist us in being knowledgeable of what is happening, but it will also help us with the Foreign Service Officer Test! Like the State Department’s...

FSOT Resource Page

Well I've gone and done it, the first FSOT Resource Page is up! So what is all the fuss and why am I excited for this page? The State Department does a great job listing a plethora of material we can read in order to prep for the FSOT. Unfortunately, besides the title...

October 2014 FSOT Dates

The dates for the October 2014 FSOT (Foreign Service Officer Test) have been publicized! The test will be administered from Saturday, October 4, to Sunday, October 11, 2014. The window to select your seat will begin later this month form Wednesday, August 27, to...

The FSOT Rescore and When to do it

If you did not pass the Foreign Service Officer Test, but you think you should have, or you were really close, then you may want to consider the FSOT rescore. Yes, this is possible. As you know by now, I did not pass the June FSOT by 0.91 points, pretty close. I did...

It’s Not Failure If You Keep Trying: The FSOT

I’ve heard it said before, some of the best things in life only come after failure. This is great, and very supportive in a father to son kind of fashion, but there is a piece missing. I think that the important lesson to take away from failing at something, is to...