This vacancy announcement will be open from September 18, 2019 to September 24, 2019 or when 100 applications have been received. The vacancy will close on whichever day 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. Candidates are encouraged to read the entire announcement before submitting their application packages.Learn more about this agency
The Bureau of Consular Affairs, Buffalo Passport Agency (CA/PPT/BU), serves U.S. citizens intending international travel through passport issuance, while protecting the integrity of the U.S. passport as proof of U.S. citizenship at home and around the world.
As a Passport Specialist, you will:
- Receive, examine, and adjudicate applications for the issuance, amendment, and replacement of passports forwarded by acceptance agents or presented by applicants or applicant representatives.
- Examine evidence of citizenship submitted with applications to determine and judge authenticity and adequacy in relation to laws, regulation, and procedures associated with the issuance of passports.
- Maintain alert of the possibility of fraudulent documentation or claims of identity.
- Perform other duties as assigned.
Occasional travel - Occasional travel may be required.
Job family (Series)
Conditions of Employment
- U.S. Citizenship is required
- Meet Recent Graduate Eligibility Requirements
- Must complete a Pathways participant agreement
- This position requires a Secret Security clearance
- Verification of employment eligibility in the United States is required.
Positions will be filled under the Pathways Recent Graduates Program. Recent Graduates who have completed a qualifying degree or certificate program within the previous two years may apply (Veterans precluded by their military service obligation, will have up to six years). *See provision in Qualification section below. Upon successful completion of the program requirements, the incumbent may be converted to a term, career or career-conditional position with promotion potential to the GS-11.
Telework Ineligible-This position is not eligible for telework.
Applicants must meet all the required qualification requirements, including education and any selective placement factors described below by the closing date of this announcement. Education may only be substituted in accordance with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Qualification Standards Handbook. Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order to be credited towards qualifications.
To qualify for this Passport Specialist under the Pathways Program you must have recently graduated within the previous two years (Veterans precluded by their military service obligation will have up to six years).
In addition to the recent graduation within the previous two years, you must also possess the following:
GS-07: At least one year of specialized experience, equivalent to the GS-05 level or higher in the Federal service, that included examining, adjudicating, or authorizing applications i.e. claims; identifying gaps or inconsistencies in fraudulent applications or counterfeit documents; and presenting information regarding applications; or have at least one full year of graduate level education in law or a field that provided the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to do the work; or I meet the requirements under the superior academic achievement provision; or I have a combination of education and specialized experience. Applicants must possess a percentage of the required specialized experience and a percentage of the required graduate level education such that, when the percentages of the required graduate level education and specialized experience are added together, they equal 100%. (You MUST submit transcripts or proof of education to support your claim)
TRANSCRIPTS ARE REQUIRED FOR THIS POSITION. You must submit an official transcript, unofficial transcript, or a list including courses, grades earned, completion dates, and quarter and semester hours earned. They must also show award and/or conferred dates. Failure to do so may result in an ineligible rating.
Foreign Education: Education completed in foreign colleges or universities may be used to meet the education requirements if you can show that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States. It is your responsibility to provide such evidence when applying. Click on the link for a list of accredited organizations recognized as specializing in interpretation of foreign education credentials.
If you are qualifying based on education, you must submit a copy of your college transcript with your application, and if selected, an official college transcript will be required to verify education prior to employment.
Pathways Program Information: For additional information regarding Pathways, please click the following link:
SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER - Your Social Security Number is requested under the authority of Executive Order 9397 to uniquely identify your records from those of other applicants who may have the same name. As allowed by law or Presidential directive, your Social Security Number is used to seek information about you from employers, schools, banks, and others who may know you.
SELECTIVE SERVICE - If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify at the time of appointment that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under Selective Service law.
REASONABLE ACCOMMODATION - This agency provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the Office of Employee Relations, Disability/Reasonable Accommodations Division, at (202) 261-8163 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be on a case-by-case basis.
EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY - The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.
EMPLOYMENT ELIGIBILITY VERIFICATION PROGRAM (E-Verify) – U.S. law requires organizations to employ only individuals who may legally work in the United States - either U.S. citizens, or foreign citizens who have the necessary authorization. This agency utilizes E-Verify to compare information from the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, to data from U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Social Security Administration (SSA) records to confirm employment eligibility. If the employee’s information does not match DHS and/or SSA records, the employee is given an opportunity to resolve the problem. If eligibility cannot be verified, employment will be terminated.
How You Will Be Evaluated
You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.
Your application will be evaluated and rated under the Category Rating and Selection procedures. Based on your responses to the job-specific self-assessment questions, eligible candidates are placed for selection consideration into one of three pre-defined quality categories as described below:
Highly-qualified Category - In addition to meeting minimum qualifications for the position, candidates must fully demonstrate proficiency in all major aspects of the position.
Well Qualified Category - In addition to meeting minimum qualifications, candidates must demonstrate proficiency in some, but not all of the major aspects of the position.
Qualified Category - In addition to meeting minimum qualifications, applicants must demonstrate a basic level of knowledge, skill and ability of the position.
Your qualifications will be evaluated on the following knowledge, skills, abilities (KSAs) and other characteristics that are relevant to the duties of this position and must be fully supported by information in your resume:
** Knowledge of the statutes, rules, and regulations
** Ability to identify inconsistencies in information/applications.
** Ability to work with people from different cultures/countries.
** Ability to communicate in writing.
** Ability to communicate orally.
Your resume serves as the basis for qualification determinations and must highlight your most relevant and significant work experience and education (if applicable) as it relates to this job opportunity. Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Your resume should include the dates of all qualifying experience (from month/year to month/year) and the number of hours worked/volunteered per week. For assistance with creating a resume, please click
Application of Veterans Preference: The Category Rating Method does not add veterans' preference points or apply the "rule of three," but protects the rights of veterans by placing them ahead of non-preference eligibles within each pre-defined quality category. Preference eligibles who meet minimum qualification requirements and who have a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10 percent (i.e., CPS and CP) must be listed in the highest quality category, except when the position being filled is scientific or professional at the GS-09 grade level or higher.
Applicants must meet all the qualification requirements and submit any required supporting documentation by the closing date of this announcement. Your application package must contain sufficient information to make a valid determination that you fully meet the basic/specialized experience requirements as stated in this job opportunity announcement for each grade level(s) for which you are applying. Applicants found to be among the top qualified candidates will be referred to the hiring official for further consideration and possible interview.
To preview questions please click here.
Background checks and security clearance
Drug test required
All required documents listed below, that are applicable to you, must be submitted to our automated system "Gateway to State" by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on the closing date of this announcement.
1. Resume - your resume or any other written format you choose should contain the required information as specified in the “How You Will Be Evaluated” section. Insufficient information will result in an ineligible rating.
2. A completed online job specific self-assessment questionnaire through the Department’s automated system “Gateway to State”.
3. Transcripts - if you are qualifying based on education OR if there are mandatory education requirements listed under the Qualifications and Evaluations section, you MUST submit a copy of your college transcript(s) with your application. If selected, an official/sealed college transcript(s) will be required to verify education prior to employment. NOTE: Qualifying Transcript(s)** (showing graduation within the past two years)
4. Veterans Preference - If claiming veteran’s preference, you must indicate the type of veteran's preference you are claiming on your resume.
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 dates, 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 no later than 120 days after 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, in addition to the DD-214 or certification, you must also 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 further information regarding Veterans, click here.
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.
To gain access to your DD214 online, please visit: http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/get-service-records.html
5. If you are qualifying based on other criteria listed under the Qualification Section of this announcement, you MUST submit the required supporting documentation (certificates, certifications, etc.) with your application.
All supporting documentation, applicable to you, must be attached to your online application via upload or by fax using the cover sheet and phone number generated in the application.
If the information you submit is insufficient to verify your eligibility or you fail to submit any of the required documents, it will disqualify you from being considered for this job opportunity.
If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:
Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.
A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.
The Department of State provides an array of benefits, financial incentives, and family friendly programs to its employees (e.g., health, life and long-term care insurance, counseling, employee consultation and referral services, retirement benefits, leave programs, child care centers, Student Loan Repayment Program, flexible work hours, Transit Subsidy Program, paid federal holidays, etc.). For additional information on DOS benefits click here.
Employees hired under the Pathways Programs on appointments for 90 days or more are eligible to earn annual and sick leave.
As a Department of State employee, program participants are eligible to receive a transit subsidy each month to compensate for travel to and from work via certain types of public transportation.
Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.
How to Apply
Please carefully read all the instructions before you begin the application process.
To apply for this job opportunity, you must submit a resume and an on-line application through the Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) application system, USAJOBS. This information will be transferred to the Department of State's Gateway to State Automated Application System.
You will have until 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on the closing date of this announcement to complete the following four-step application process:
STEP 1: Select the "Apply On-line" button and follow the instructions to register or sign into USAJOBS.
STEP 2: Submit a detailed resume or any other written format you choose documenting your job-related qualifications, experience, and education (if applicable). Cover letter is optional. If you submit a cover letter, you must also submit a resume. Please see the "How You Will Be Evaluated" section for specific information that should be outlined in your resume.
STEP 3: Answer the job-specific self-assessment questions on-line through the Gateway to State automated application system. These questions will be used to evaluate your qualifications and experience for this job opportunity.
STEP 4: Submit all required documentation, applicable to you, listed in the Required Documents section of this job opportunity to the Department’s automated application system "Gateway to State" prior to the closing date of this announcement. For instructions on how to view the status of your supporting documentation, please click here.
Technical assistance with your on-line application can be obtained by contacting the Help Desk at email@example.com OR by calling (866) 656-6830 or (703) 269-4944 between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. ET
STEP 5: Your application package will be reviewed to verify that you meet the qualifications and eligibility requirements for the position. If determined qualified and eligible, you may be called or emailed for an interview.
There is a maximum number of 100 applications for this vacancy announcement. The vacancy will close on the closing date listed above 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.
The vacancy will close on the closing date listed above.
Agency contact information
AddressU.S. Department of State
1999 Dyess Avenue
(Charleston Reg. Ctr.)
Charleston, South Carolina 29405
Once the online application package is received, you will be notified through USAJOBS of your qualification status and referral or non-referral to the hiring official for further consideration. If further evaluation or interviews are required you will be contacted. If a tentative job offer is made, we will conduct a suitability and/or security background investigation.
You may check the status of your application for this position at any time by logging onto the USAJOBS "My Account" tab and clicking on "Application Status."
Fair & Transparent
The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.
Equal Employment Opportunity Policy
The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.
Reasonable Accommodation Policy
Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.
A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.
Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:
- An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
- An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
- An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.
You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.
Legal and regulatory guidance
This job originated on www.usajobs.gov. For the full announcement and to apply, visit www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/545279300. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.