Special agents with the CIA discretely obtain intelligence that is then analyzed to isolate potential threats to the United States. Policymakers then use the findings of this analysis to formulate the policies used to protect American interests around the world.
Counter-terrorism is a major focus of the CIA, as is analyzing the trends of international drug trafficking organizations. Many parts of Kentucky have such high levels of drug smuggling that they have come to form what is now known as the Appalachian HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area). While American citizens conduct much of this trafficking, the federal government reports that the Gulf cartel of Mexico is also highly active in Louisville.
Requirements for Joining the CIA’s National Clandestine Service in Kentucky
The CIA’s National Clandestine Service Division in Kentucky offers two placement options for those interested in employment in clandestine operations.
The PT Program is for individuals aged 21-25 who has a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree but lack the proper work experience.
The CST Program is for individuals aged 26-35 who has a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in addition to multiple years of work (or military) experience.
Both the PT and CST Programs have similar qualifications that applicants must meet in order to be considered as a candidate.
Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree or higher with a GPA of at least 3.0.
All applicants should have knowledge in specific subject areas including biological engineering, chemical engineering, economics, finance, international business, international relations, nuclear science, or physical science.
Applicants should have an interest in foreign affairs, great communication skills, and possess excellent interpersonal skills. In addition, all applicants must be able to process information quickly and accurately. Applicants must also be capable of working alone productively and as part of an investigative team.
Applicants should have prior residency internationally, international knowledge of foreign countries or be proficient in multilingualism.
Applicants are required to participate in two separate interviews before moving forward in the hiring process. In addition, they must also complete a full criminal background check, medical exam, polygraph test and psychological evaluation. In order to be considered for the position, individuals must not have engaged in the use of illegal drugs for the past year.
Requirements and Training to Become a CIA Agent in Kentucky
The CIA has high standards for those who seek jobs as special agents with the agency.
- Possession of at least a bachelor’s degree
- Three years of experience conducting criminal investigations
- No illegal drug use within the past year
Professional Skills Required:
- Strong negotiation skills
- Considerable professional knowledge of criminal procedures
- Ability to work with large amounts of data
- Assemble and assimilate it
- Discern key issues
- Draw appropriate conclusions
- Ability to work independently and as part of a team
- Ability to work under pressure
- Ability to prioritize multiple projects
Required Special Agent Training at the Criminal Investigator Training Program:
The ideal candidates for CIA careers have already completed this program. Those who have not are sent to the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center for 56 days of training to become criminal investigators. It entails the following:
- Legal training
- Managing criminal cases
- Tactical training
- Physical techniques and conditioning
- Vehicle handling skills
- Physical evidence
Each trainee is mentored throughout the program by Continuing Case Investigation Coordinators to ensure that he or she becomes highly skilled in performing criminal investigations. The progress of the trainees is constantly assessed by the following:
- Practical exercises
Al-Qaeda Terrorists in Kentucky
Two Iraqi terrorists affiliated with al-Qaeda were inadvertently resettled in Bowling Green as refugees. The fingerprints of one were subsequently found on the trigger of an IED from Iraq that had been used to kill U.S. soldiers. Further investigation showed that these individuals were trying to export Stinger missiles to terrorists in Iraq.
After putting them both under heavy surveillance, the Justice Department indicted the two individuals in 2012. Both defendants were charged with the following crimes:
- Attempting to provide material support to:
- aL-Qaeda in Iraq
- Conspiring to possess, transfer, and export Stinger missiles
In addition, one was charged with these crimes:
- Conspiring against U.S. nationals abroad
- Distributing information on the use and manufacture of IEDs
Both men were sentenced to long prison terms in 2013. One was sentenced to life in prison, while the other received a 40-year sentence.
The discovery of these terrorists caused the government to reevaluate its policy of repatriating Iraqi refugees in the U.S. Initially, only those who had helped American forces were re-settled in the U.S.