Requirements for CIA Jobs in South Carolina

The CIA has been actively monitoring nuclear proliferation throughout the world since the invention of these destructive weapons, and to this day continues to act to prevent the enemies of America from possessing them. Home to the following six major military installations, South Carolina would be a likely target if such a strike were ever to occur:

  • Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort
  • Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island
  • Naval Weapons Station Charleston
  • Charleston Air Mobility Command Field
  • Shaw Air Force Base
  • Fort Jackson

The thought that a nuclear strike could happen in South Carolina is not fantasy, as was clear in the Mars Bluff incident that occurred in 1958. More recently, the state’s prominent senator warned in a September 2013 speech of the dangers posed by possible rouge terrorist groups arriving in Charleston Harbor with a nuclear device.

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Candidates who are interested in learning how to become a CIA Agent in South Carolina can start by taking a look at the agency’s hiring standards.

Requirements to Join the CIA’s National Clandestine Service in South Carolina

There are two entry-level positions available for candidates interested in a Core Collector position in the CIA’s National Clandestine Service in South Carolina: the Professional Trainee Program and the Clandestine Service Program.

  • Professional Trainee Program – Each applicant must have a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree.  Most lack work experiences.  Candidates for this position are typically between the ages of 21-25.
  • Clandestine Service Program – Each applicant must have a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree, as well as a number of years of appropriate work or military experience. Candidates for this position are usually 26-35, with 35 being the maximum age for employment consideration.

Qualifications for employment are virtually identical.

Scholastic Requirements

An applicant must have at minimum:

  • A Bachelor’s degree
  • A GPA of 3.0 – or higher – as an undergraduate

When applying for the Core Collector position in South Carolina, preference will be given to candidates that hold degrees in biological engineering, chemical engineering, economics, finance, international business and relations, nuclear science or physical science.

Candidates should have a strong interest in international affairs and be able to:

  • Make decisions quickly, many times in less than ideal situations
  • Clearly and accurately communicate both verbally and through written text
  • Work independently or as part of a team


Foreign Travel History, Foreign Language Experience and Country Knowledge

Each individual applying for a career as a Core Collector is required to be fluent in a second language, preferably Arabic, Chinese, Dari, Indonesian, Korean, Kurdish, Pashto, Persian, Russian, Somali, Turkish and Urdu. Candidates should also have an extensive working knowledge of foreign affairs, spent time living abroad and appreciate the importance of cross-cultural sensitivity.

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When applying for a Core Collector position with the CIA, candidates must undergo two personal interviews, a psychological and medical exam, background check and polygraph interview. To be eligible, candidates must have abstained from illegal drug use for at least the past 12 months.

Meeting the Qualifications for Special Agent Investigator Jobs in South Carolina

Degree and Experience Required to Become a CIA Special Agent

One of the most important CIA requirements prospective agents can plan for is education. CIA Agents specialize in a wide variety of areas, so the agency accepts a bachelor’s degree in any subject as meeting its minimum education requirement. These can include:

  • Criminal Justice
  • Crime Scene Investigation
  • Computer Science
  • Law Enforcement
  • Sociology
  • Psychology
  • Sciences

The application for CIA jobs can be found online under the title Special Agent/Investigator. The first step in applying is to create an online account, which is valid for only three days from the time it is created. The application includes:

  • Verification of minimum requirements:
    • At least three years of complex, highly regarded criminal investigative experience
    • US citizenship
    • Good moral record


  • Questions Regarding:
    • Education and employment history
    • Previous polygraph examinations, security clearances, and licenses
    • Previous instances of criminal behavior, including copyright infringement
    • Skills and proficiencies
    • Possible conflicting allegiances

If a CIA recruiter contacts an applicant to continue in the hiring process, the prospective agent will next need to complete:

  • In-depth, extensive background investigation
  • Polygraph examination
  • Medical examination
  • Psychological evaluation

CIA Training at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center

CIA training takes place at a Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, where newly hired agents will complete the Criminal Investigator Training Program (CITP). This will provide essential instruction for key aspects of CIA jobs, including:

  • Federal criminal justice system
  • Instructions on filing warrants, indictments, and federal complaints
  • Courtroom testimony
  • Conducting undercover operations
  • Suspect interviewing
  • Prisoner interrogation
  • Tactical weapons training
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Charleston is the site of one of the nation’s Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers. At a future date this location may offer the CITP course out of its facilities. Currently CIA Agents can also find relevant training in areas such as:

  • Firearms
  • Maritime Law Enforcement and Port Security
  • Driving maneuvers
  • Self-defense techniques

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