Entry level government jobs: Working for the government is still cool

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The job market landscape has taken a dramatic shift over the past one or two decades. More and more university graduates in the US hit the job trail with either one of two industries in mind: Wall Street or Silicon Valley. And it is not entirely surprising given the news on huge IPOs for technology companies and the above average compensation for Wall Street firms. But one area that has often been neglected but provides great job opportunities too is government. That is why you should consider entry level government jobs. Government is not only the number one employer in any country but is the most complex, and multi-faceted institution. So if you are looking for government entry level jobs, take cognizance that the types of jobs are numerous dealing with virtually every segment of the economy.

Whereas the compensation in entry level government jobs may not be at the same compensation level as an equivalent function in private sector firms in Wall Street or Silicon Valley, there are benefits to working for the government including a higher job security, reasonable remuneration and a good retirement benefits. Some government jobs also allow you to be at the fore front of charting and enforcing rules and regulations governing particular industries.

Based on the breath of government entry level jobs that one can apply for, the qualifications required will differ from one job to another. Some jobs will require qualification accounting, others will be looking for engineers and there are those that will need a human resources expert. Not all entry level jobs will require the same level of education. There are those that will need a minimum of an undergraduate degree but will prefer someone with a post graduate qualification. There are others that may not require degree level education such as certain positions in the police or fire fighters department; of course, this does not slight the very critical role that such jobs perform in society.

The US government uses an internal grading system to identify entry level government jobs. Grades G1 through to G6 are all classified as government entry level jobs. Anything above G6 all the way to the top grade of G15 is not considered entry level. Each grade has 10 internal levels meaning you can be G5-Level 1 while someone else is G5-Level7. Persons with an associate degree will usually start at GS4 while those with a four year degree will begin anywhere from GS5 and GS7 even though GS7 is ordinarily not considered an entry level grade. Entry at GS7 is usually on the strength of additional credentials such as one year of study post-university.

The following are some of the government entry level jobs one can apply for.


Due to the central nature of accounting in any organization, there are numerous sectors of government in which an accounting graduate can find entry level jobs. As an accountant you could work with the government's conduit for providing international aid, the US Agency for International Development (USAID). You could also work for your city or state where you can be tasked with budgeting for different parts of government ranging from urban development, education, welfare and healthcare. The average entry level salary for government accountant is $27 per hour.

Police Officers

Before joining the metropolitan police force, you must apply for, be accepted and thereafter go through police training. Upon completion of the training you may be deployed in different parts of the city or even your state. Alternatively, you can also apply for entry level jobs in other nationwide law enforcement agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the Central Intelligence Agency but note that the FBI and CIA will sometimes require a higher level of education from the metropolitan police. The average starting salary for a police officer is $24 per hour.

Civil Engineers

As a civil engineer you will be involved in the pre-assessment, approval and construction supervision of government structures in your city, county or state. This could be the repair of school buildings, demolishing of condemned government buildings or the building of bridges and roads. However, your role as a civil engineer may also involve ensuring that any buildings coming up in your locale are done in accordance with State and City legislation. The starting salary is $52 per hour.

There are many other entry level government jobs to choose from and it all boils down to your qualification and interest.
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