Pathways Internship Programs

The U.S. Department of State’s Pathways Internship Program includes both the Internship Temporary Program (ITEP) and the Internship Experience Program (IEP). Both programs are targeted toward U.S. citizens enrolled in a wide variety of educational institutions from high school to graduate school and professional academic levels. Both programs provide students with opportunities to explore Federal careers while being paid for the work performed.

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The temporary nature of the ITEP allows for interns to work during seasonal and holiday breaks in academic programs as well as year-round. Interns in this program are appointed to temporary appointments, not to exceed one year or their projected graduation date (whichever is shorter) and extensions may be made in one year increments. The positions to which the interns are appointed have no promotion potential, therefore, students must apply through USAJOBS to be considered for higher-graded positions. ITEP participants who are expected to work 130 hours per month or more for at least 90 days will be eligible to enroll in a health benefits plan. ITEP participants ar not eligible for any other benefits until after conversion into the competitive service. ITEP participants are eligible for noncompetitive conversions to the competitive service within 120 days of completion of the Pathways Program.

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Interns in this program are appointed to permanent, excepted service appointments and do not have a not to exceed date. The appointment is expected to last the length of the academic program for which the intern is enrolled. IEP participants, while in the program, are eligible for noncompetitive promotions if they meet the developed qualification standards for the position. IEP interns are also eligible for federal employee benefits (e.g. life, health, and retirement). Like ITEP participants, IEP participants are eligible for noncompetitive conversions to the competitive service within 120 days of program completion.

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For specific inquiries on the Pathways Internship Programs (ITEP and IEP), please contact

  • U.S. Citizenship
  • Must be at least 16 years of age by the closing date of the announcement
  • You will be subject to random drug testing
  • Be able to receive with a Secret or Top Secret security clearance
  • Must maintain student eligibility for duration of internship*
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.0 at time of application and throughout internship appointment

* A student means you have been accepted for enrollment, or are enrolled as a degree-seeking student in an accredited college or university at least half time. You may also be currently enrolled in high school for some positions. Your degree does not have to be related to the position/series you apply for.

To qualify for this position at the GS-01 grade level: Enrollment in a high school or GED Program.

To qualify for this position at the GS-02 grade level: High school diploma or equivalent.

To qualify for this position at the GS-03 grade level: Completion of 1 full academic year of post-high school study.

To qualify for this position at the GS-04 grade level: Completion of 2 full academic years of post-high school study or associate’s degree.

To qualify for this position at the GS-05 grade level: Completion of all requirements for a bachelor’s degree or equivalent degree.

To qualify for this position at the GS-06 grade level: Completion of all requirements for a bachelor’s degree or equivalent AND completion of 1 semester or equivalent of graduate level education; or Eligibility under the Superior Academic Achievement Provision and completion of a bachelor’s degree.

To qualify for this position at the GS-07 grade level: Completion of 1 full academic year of graduate level education or eligibility under the Superior Academic Achievement Provision after completing a bachelor’s degree.

While the government uses at least six different pay scales, the majority of Civil Service employees are paid using the GS (General Schedule) pay scale. The General Service pay scale for Civil Service employees features 15 pay grades, GS-1 (lowest) – GS-15 (highest) with 10 steps within each grade. You can visit the GS pay scale here:

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Employees hired under the Pathways Programs on appointments for 90 days or more are eligible to earn annual and sick leave. Interns hired under the Internship Temporary Experience Program (ITEP) are considered temporary employees and are generally eligible to enroll in the Federal Employees Health Benefit Program if they are expected to work 130 hours per month or more for at least 90 days, in accordance with 5 CFR 890.102. Those who meet the criteria laid out in these provisions will receive the same government contribution as full-time permanent employees. There is no provision for temporary employees to be eligible for life insurance coverage.

Once an announcement is posted on, complete applications (to include all required documents) must be submitted electronically through the “Gateway to State” system.

Candidates have until 11:59 pm Eastern Standard Time on the closing date on the announcement to complete the application process. This includes submitting the online application as well as any required documents as defined in the Required Documents section in the listed announcement. Candidates are encouraged to complete their applications well before the application deadline to ensure they receive consideration. Should candidates be missing any of the required documents or submit their application late, they will be disqualified for consideration of employment.

There is a maximum number of applications for each vacancy announcement. The vacancy will close on the closing date listed in the announcement or when the maximum number of applications is received. The vacancy will close when the first of these conditions are met. If the application limit is reached on the same day the announcement opened, the open and close date will be the same.

All required documents listed below, that are applicable to you, must be submitted to the automated system “Gateway to State” by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on the closing date of the announcement. The following documents must be submitted for your application package to be considered complete. It is your responsibility to ensure all required documents are received within the required time frames. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, illegible fax transmissions, delays in the mail service, system failure or downtime, etc. Failure to submit required, legible documents may result in loss of consideration.

  1. Resume that includes the following information:
    1. contact information;
    2. completed course work (unit/credit hours);
    3. academic standing/GPA;
    4. work/volunteer experience including the work schedule and hours worked per week as well as dates or employment; and title, series, and grade, if applicable;
    5. supervisors name, phone number and email address for each work period listed and whether or not we may contact them for reference checks; and
    6. references.
  2. Current transcripts: an unofficial copy is sufficient with the application; however if selected, an official college transcript will be required. Transcripts MUST include the students name, name of the school, current GPA/academic standing, past and current coursework, and degree program. If your school’s transcripts or documentation do not provide all the necessary information listed above, you should include additional official academic documentation that meets the requirements.
  3. Proof of Enrollment or Class Registration and documentation that states projected graduation date*
  4. If you are claiming veterans’ preference, you must submit proof of veterans’ preference with your application. **

* Proof of Enrollment may include a screen shot of the semester class schedule, an official letter of enrollment, or listed on official transcripts. The document should show the academic institution where the student is actively enrolled in courses, the degree or certificate program, and enrollment in at least a half-time status (as defined by the academic institution).

**For 5-point veteran’s preference, you must provide a copy of your DD-214 Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty (Member Copy 4 is preferable) which must show the type of discharge and dates of active duty. If you are currently on active duty, you must provide a certification on letterhead from your military branch which contains your military service date, expected date of discharge or release, and the character of service to show that your military service was performed under honorable conditions. The expected date of discharge or release must be within 120 days of the date the certification is submitted for consideration for this vacancy announcement. If the appropriate information is not submitted to confirm your current or expected discharge status, dates of service, etc., you will not receive credit for the claimed active duty military service.

For 10-point veteran’s preference, you must submit a current version of the SF-15 (Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference), dated October 2013, and any documentation required by this form to support your claim. Previous editions of the SF-15 will not be accepted. If we cannot verify your 10-point preference status, you will receive 5-point preference if veterans’ preference requirements have been met.

For Sole Survivorship preference, you must provide a copy of your DD-214 (Member Copy 4 is preferable) or another form of official documentation which shows your discharge or release from active duty occurred on or after August 29, 2008 and was based on a sole survivorship discharge.

For further information regarding Veterans, click here.