The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) manages its operations in a covert manner, but still has a strong presence not only overseas, but also throughout the United States. CIA special agents and support personnel work to uncover foreign and domestic espionage, terrorism, and other activities that threaten the safety of our nation.
Following the events of September 11, 2001, the CIA also began working alongside the FBI through its Joint Terrorism Task Forces. This joint effort was in place during the March 2012 investigation that led to the Denver, Colorado, arrest of a Philadelphia man for providing material support to a designated foreign terrorism organization.
It was discovered that the individuals was providing support to the Islamic Jihad Union, an organization that was responsible for a number of attacks and bombings.
Colorado may also be the target of international terrorist threats due to its wealth of conventional and renewable energy resources, including oil, natural gas and coal.
Requirements to Enter into the CIA’s National Clandestine Service in Colorado
A Core Collector position with the CIA’s National Clandestine Services carries a lot of responsibility – and a lot of clout. For individuals interested in applying for a position as a Core Collector in Colorado, two entry-level career paths are available. Each is designed to meet the needs of individuals based on specific qualifications.
- Professional Trainee Program (PT): The PT program is for trainee’s ages 21-25 with a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree with no prior work experience.
- Clandestine Service Program (CST): The CST program is for trainee’s ages 26-35 with prior work or military experience and a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree.
Academic Benchmarks – Common Bachelor’s degree majors include biological engineering, chemical engineering, economics, finance, global business, nuclear science, and physical sciences.
Career Prerequisites and Expertise – Being able to work independently and as part as a team with minimal supervision is a necessary trait for all Core Collectors in Colorado to possess. Individuals should also be able to work well in a highly stressful environment, as well has have superb verbal and written communication skills.
Foreign Travel, Area Knowledge and Language Proficiency – Previous foreign travel with extensive area knowledge is preferred and individuals with prior residency in a foreign country are highly sought after. Proficiency in a second language such as Dari, Indonesian, Korean, Kurdish, Pashto, Persian, Russian, Somali, Turkish, Urdu, Arabic or Chinese is also a preferred credential.
The Nuts and Bolts of Getting Hired – All individuals must undergo a complete medical and psychological examination. In addition, a polygraph interview and background investigation will be conducted. No prior usage of drugs in the previous 12 months is permitted, and both the individual applying and their spouse (if married) must be US citizens.
Becoming a CIA Special Agent in Colorado
Basic Requirements – Like other locations throughout the United States, the special agents of the CIA in Colorado must meet strict requirements. Specifically, individuals who want to learn how to become a CIA agent in Colorado must:
- Be a United States citizen
- Not have used illegal drugs within the past 12 months
- Be able to pass a top-secret security clearance and background investigation
- Must be able to pass a thorough medical and psychological evaluation, including a polygraph exam
Degree Requirements – Further, candidates for CIA agent jobs must possess:
- A bachelor’s degree with a GPA of at least 3.0
- At least three years of experience in criminal investigations with a history of performance excellence
Typical degrees for individuals seeking CIA agent jobs in Colorado include homeland security, criminal justice, criminology, and sociology, although degrees also deemed highly desirable by the CIA include:
- International business
- Biological engineering
- International relations
- Nuclear engineering
- Chemical engineering
Candidates fluent in a foreign language are preferred, as are candidates who have international affairs experience or experience living overseas. Candidates for CIA jobs in Colorado must also possess:
- Strong interpersonal skills
- Strong communications skills
- The ability to write and brief accurately
- Absolute personal and professional integrity
Training Requirements – The initial training requirement for becoming a CIA special agent in Colorado includes completing the Criminal Investigation Training Program (CITP) through the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.
The Colorado-China Connection
CIA agents and their federal partners were undoubtedly involved in the 2013 espionage case in Colorado Springs. It was discovered, through federal investigative work that a Chinese national was attempting to export radiation-hardened computer chips for satellites. In fact, federal prosecutors who tried the case said the man purchased more than a half million dollars’ worth of the material from a Colorado Springs manufacturer.
He was arrested by federal agents in California as he attempted to transfer the chips by disguising them in containers of infant formula.