Applicants may qualify for the CBP Officer position based on education, experience, or a combination of both. Applicants must meet the eligibility criteria for each grade level by the closing date of the vacancy announcement. The only exception is made for those who are currently enrolled in college. They may complete the education-based qualification requirements within nine (9) months of the closing date of the announcement
During the application process, you will be asked a series of questions regarding your education and/or experience for self certification of your eligibility for the grade 5 and/or grade 7 levels. Based on your responses to the questions your grade eligibility will be determined. You can only be considered and tentatively selected for the grade(s) for which you are determined eligible.
Experience Requirements for a GS-5 level: Applicants must have at least three (3) complete years of general experience that requires the ability to meet and deal with people and the ability to learn and apply a body of facts. Examples of such duties include explaining administrative requirements and procedures to others and screening forms to ensure that they are completed properly in accordance with requirements. Positions involving lead and supervisory duties or operating a business should also have provided the required knowledge, skills, and abilities. The performance of predominately typing, filing, copying, messenger duties, or other purely mechanistic tasks, is not creditable as general experience, nor is experience in trades, crafts, or equipment operator work.
Experience Requirements for a GS-7 level: Applicants must have one (1) complete year of specialized experience that entailed performance of substantive duties in inspections work at borders, seaports, airports or other ports of entry and/or work involving preliminary screening of persons for entry and immigration status, or compliance/regulatory work. Inspections experience must have demonstrated the ability to apply specialized knowledge of the laws, regulations, and procedures for importing and exporting merchandise to and from the United States and/or law enforcement work at the local, State or Federal levels, which included dealing with persons suspected of entering the United States illegally. Compliance/regulatory work experience must have demonstrated the ability to collect, develop, and evaluate facts, evidence, and pertinent data in assessing compliance with or violations of laws, rules or regulations. Specialized experience is generally gained in the performance of the duties of the following kinds of positions in the private/public sectors: Inspector, Auditor, Analyst, Examiner, Administrator, and Investigator as well as some Technicians and Assistants.
Education: If applicants do not have the work experience described above, four (4) years of study in any field leading to a bachelor's degree in an accredited college or university can be substituted and is fully qualifying for the GS-5 level. For the GS-7 level, one (1) full academic year of graduate education, or a master's or higher degree is qualifying, or meeting the provisions of Superior Academic Achievement (SAA).
Education obtained from a foreign university or college is not creditable for qualification requirements unless it has been evaluated by a private foreign educational credential evaluation service (see http://www.naces.org/members.htm for a list of organizations that provide this evaluation service).
Combining qualifying experience and education: If you do not qualify based on experience or education alone, you may be able to qualify based on a combination of your experience and education. Follow the directions below in order to convert each to a percentage, and then add the percentages together to see if they total 100 percent. To determine your percentage of qualifying experience, you must divide your total number of months of qualifying experience by the required number of months of experience.
Age Requirement: The CBP Officer has a maximum entry age. Candidates must be referred for selection before reaching their 37th birthday in accordance with Public Law 110-161. The age restriction does not apply if you are a veteran preference eligible. If you are serving or have served in a federal civilian law enforcement position covered by Title 5 U.S.C. 8336(c) or Title 5 U.S.C. 8412(d) you may have sufficient service to meet the requirement. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screeners' experience and military enlisted service do not meet this requirement. There are no other exceptions to Public Law 110-161 allowed.
Citizenship: Applicants must be U.S. Citizens.
Residency: If you are not currently a CBP employee, you must meet one or more of the following primary residency criteria for the last three years prior to applying to this announcement:
1. Resided in the United States or its protectorate or territories (excluding short trips abroad, such as vacations);
2. Worked for the United States government as an employee overseas in a federal or military capacity; or
3. Been a dependent of a United States federal or military employee serving overseas.
Exceptions may be granted to applicants if they can provide complete state-side coverage information required to make a suitability/security determination. Examples of state-side coverage information include: the state-side address of the company headquarters where the applicant's personnel file is located, the state-side address of the Professor in charge of the applicant's "Study Abroad" program, the church records for the applicant's overseas church missions, and/or the state-side addresses of anyone who worked or studied with the applicant while overseas. If selected for a position, applicants must provide this information when filing their application for employment.
Firearms: CBP Officers must qualify in the use of firearms after appointment, and will be required to carry firearms in the performance of their duties.
Language Ability: CBP Officers interact with individuals from many countries. At some duty locations, CBP Officers may be required to be proficient in reading, writing and speaking a language other than English at the start of employment. For example, Spanish is required for duty locations along the Southwest Border, primarily in Southern California, New Mexico, Arizona, Western and Southwestern Texas, as well as Miami, Florida and Puerto Rico. During the application process you will be given the opportunity to select up to 3 languages (of 26 identified) in which you are proficient.
Mandatory Completion of Basic Training: CBP Officers must attend approximately 17-19 weeks of paid training (class varies in length) at the CBP Academy located in Brunswick, GA. Your time at the Academy will be spent attending formalized classroom training and a rigorous participatory fitness training program. If you are not already involved in a physical fitness program, you may wish to begin exercising now to prepare yourself for the physical demands and requirements of the training. Candidates selected for duty locations where they are required to be proficient in reading, writing, and speaking Spanish at the start of employment will be required to either pass a Spanish language profiency examination or attend a 6 week long Spanish immersion class at the academy, which you must pass. Failure to successfully complete the training may be grounds for mandatory removal from the position. For more information on training at FLETC, please visit the web site at: www.FLETC.gov/.
Misdemeanor Crime of Domestic Violence: The CBP Officer is a weapon-carrying position. Any person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence cannot lawfully possess a firearm or ammunition. If you have been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, you are not qualified for this position. You will be required to certify whether you have ever been convicted of such an offense. Providing false or fraudulent information is criminally punishable by fine or imprisonment (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 1001).
Motor Vehicle Operation: CBP Officers must possess a valid automobile driver's license at the time of appointment.
Selective Service Registration: Prior to appointment, male applicants born after December 31, 1959, must certify that they have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under Selective Service law.
Written Test: A written test will be administered to all individuals who successfully complete the application process. The test itself takes about five (5) hours and contains three (3) sections -- Reasoning Skills, Writing Skills, and the CBP Experience record. Applicants must obtain a combined rating of at least 70. Test scores are good for one year. Applicants who take and fail the written test will not be able to retake the examination for 1 year; in addition, a CBP Officer announcement must be open to apply. We believe that proper test preparation is essential for the successful candidate and suggest that you take time to carefully read the study guide before you begin the application process. You may download the guide from our website at www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/careers/study_guides/guides_supervisory/entry_guide/.
Video-Based Test/Face-to-Face Interview: All candidates who pass the written test must take and pass both a video-based test (VBT) and a face-to-face structured interview (SI).
HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED:
Background Investigation: These positions are categorized as "Critical-Sensitive." Prior to appointment, tentative selectees must undergo and satisfactorily complete a background investigation, which includes but is not limited to a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) name and fingerprint check and a background investigation. As part of the background investigation, you will be asked to submit a security questionnaire (SF-86). The questionnaire will ask questions regarding education, residences, past and current employers, police records, financial situation, drug and alcohol usage, etc. The background investigation will consist of, among other things, a personal interview, a check for past arrest records, a credit check, and interviews of employers and personal references. This inquiry will cover your activities during the past ten years. If your background includes past or present arrests, convictions, dismissals from previous jobs, outstanding debts and financial issues, excessive use of alcohol, violations of immigration laws, use of illegal drugs, and/or the sale and distribution of illegal drugs, you probably will be rated unsuitable for this position. A history of problems in any of these areas may result in your disqualification for this position.
Polygraph: The CBPO position is a polygraph required position. You will be required to take a polygraph examination that takes approximately 4-6 hours to complete. The results will be used to determine your suitability for the position.
Drug Testing: Satisfactory completion of a drug test is a condition of employment into the position. We will schedule, provide, and pay for the drug test. Once employed, CBP Officers are subject to random and unannounced drug testing.
Physical and Medical Requirements: Because the duties of the position are of a strenuous nature and require a high degree of interaction and responsibility to the public, you must undergo and successfully pass our medical screening process. We will schedule, provide and pay for the required basic medical examination.
Physical Fitness Screening: Due to the strenuous nature of the CBP Officer duties and the associated training programs, fitness tests have been developed and will be used to screen candidates for entry-level CBP Officer positions. Candidates will be required to pass 2 pre-employment fitness tests.