Help with security clearance?? My boyfriend is about to graduate Georgetown with a masters in applied intelligence (GPA: 4.0) , has had numerous cyber intelligence internships, and great connections. He’s having trouble breaking into the security clearance field- no one will sponsor. Ideas??

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Happy to refer to AFS. They will sponsor you easily. Start you off easy and slowly build you up to a TS. No one will hire you directly to a TS role without a TS clearance because they don't want you on the bench for two years while you wait for the clearance to come through.

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Totally agree with this. It’s a step by step thing. Thanks so much for the input and help. I’m sure he’ll find all of this interesting

Accenture federal is a great place to start! Been here 3 years and have progressed all the way to TS from public trust!

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Jealous

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I would never wish working at Guidehouse on my worst enemy

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Yes. Got cleared at GH and bounced for 50% raise elsewhere. Worth it if you can get cleared there.

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It’s honestly hard to get one, esp a Top Secret, bc the company has to pay to get it done. If it’s for just secret, it’s not necessarily hard but a company will want you to have prior.

TS forget about that. You would have to join the military an enlist into a job that would provide that clearance. For example if he went national guard army or AirForce Intel, you will get a TS.

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Wow I just reinstalled fishbowl and this thread made it worth it. OP just wanted some insights into clearances.
I don’t know about cyber but can speak to my experiences as a dev - joined with no clearance and got placed on an Intel project right away and submitted for a ts/sci. Got the clearance in ~7 months which might be quick (born/lived most of my life overseas). Once the contract ended got submitted for a clearance upgrade to fsp.
At IBM a good amount of technical projects are a minimum secret so most people end up with a secret - there’s a shortage of people with ts/sci so we now upgrade a fair amount of those with secrets to a ts/sci.

I know Guidehouse is aggressively hiring and will sponsor. Happy to refer

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It may be best to start somewhere that is just public trust and leverage that into clearance. I started at dhs and worked projects there for a few years until I was able to break into foreign policy work. A few firms (like GH) will work with you on that. What's his background outside of Intel?

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Feel free to DM and I'd be happy to set up some time to talk to him/you about how to break into the space. Also happy to discuss a referral to the firm.

Start with a Secret then go from there, plan on a slow progression through the various levels of clearance… then be careful what you wish for because if you get to deep it’s hard to get out of the cleared space, and by that point you might be totally fed up with the feds. lol

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Target big firms that do project based work with DoD/Intel (Guidehouse, Booz, Deloitte, Accenture). They are most likely to have a variety of contracts that will sponsor, and a bunch that will hold him in the meantime.

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In fairness, he can be all of those things….and still be a terrorist

Idk but I once walked around the INSA conference and there was a guy saying to every person under thirty “hey! Need a job? We’ll get you cleared!”

If he is trying to get into cyber security then he will have a difficult time. Getting a cleared job in the cybersecurity space is difficult because most ppl you’re competing with bring technical skills and can hit the job running.

Also, does he have atleast tue Security+ certification? If he wants to do cybersecurity threat intel. work then he’ll need atleast that. Also, just from my job(s), threat intel is usually ppl with exp. and not fresh outta college. Even with a masters, cybersecurity hiring managers are looking more at skills, certs, and security tools used

Best thing for him to do is get any type of help desk job that allows him to atleast sponsor him for a Secret. It’ll pay like crap but thats what you gotta do. I started out at a Public trust in 2018 and switched several jobs and Im at a Top secret now.

But, tbh, the DC area is crazy competitive with cybersecurity jobs. So many ppl think just getting a degree will help em out. Doesnt work that way. Tell him to get his Security+ and a CISSP

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Is this feasible? I want to make around $240k in fed contracting.

Don't want to:
- Be a senior exec at a big firm
- Do a lot of biz dev (don't mind white papers or presenting)
- Get higher than secret clearance
- Do cyber or software engineering (don't mind managing tech talent)

Do want to:
- Have sole ownership of a single project (complex, operational work with 50+/- direct reports is fine)
- Work internationally and/or across multiple countries
- Control the project/info flow to client

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