The United State Foreign Service is the primary personnel system used by the diplomatic service of the United States federal government, under the aegis of the United States Department of State. Members of the Foreign Service are selected through a series of written and oral examinations. They serve at any of the 265 United States diplomatic missions around the world, including embassies, consulates, and other facilities. Members of the Foreign Service also staff the headquarters of the four foreign affairs agencies: the Department of State, headquartered at the Harry S Truman Building in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, D.C.; the Department of Agriculture; the Department of Commerce; and the United State Agency for International Development.
Look to the Future
A well-rounded liberal arts education is a great preparation for foreign service. While no particular majors are required, students interested in Foreign Service especially should take relevant courses in comparative politics/ international relations (especially US Foreign Policy), history, economics, and sociology/ anthropology. Learning to speak a language, or languages, other than English is also an asset. Engaged learning opportunities such as internship and study abroad experiences can be an asset in preparing for graduate programs. Students should also consider applying for the Fulbright Program prior to the Foreign Service.
For further information contact Dr. Daniel Edquist-Whelan in the Politics and International Relations Department.