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How Can I Get a Professional Job at the CDC?

Job-at-CDCWith the success of shows like “The Walking Dead” highlighting the importance of the Center for Disease Control, or the CDC as it’s more commonly known, it’s no wonder that many people are wondering what the necessary steps are to landing such a highly coveted job there. Luckily, we’ve compiled some of the most important information in relation to the CDC to help make your job search as smooth as possible.

Choose Your Field

The CDC employs more than just researchers; it’s a government facility that has many fields for interested parties. From behavioral scientists to biologists to epidemiologists, the CDC has it all. As such, it’s difficult to provide general application guidelines, as each field has specific qualifications that the CDC is particularly interested in. Still, most entry-level positions in the CDC require that applicants have, at the minimum, a bachelor’s degree in their related field or four years of equivalent experience. For higher positions, and better pay, more sophisticated degrees are required. The one exception to this rule is the position of medical officer, which requires a doctorate to even be considered for the position. The message here is pretty clear: if you want to work at the CDC, start studying now.

Work as a Contractor

Even with the amount of studying you’ve done, it might not be enough to attract the CDC’s attention. One of the most recommended routes to earning a permanent position with the CDC is to initially apply for contracting work. After doing contracting work for anywhere from two to six years, it is not uncommon for the CDC to transfer these employees into full-time federal employees that work with the CDC entirely. If you haven’t had any luck with your applications in the past, this may be the best way to work towards your dreams.

Do the Prep Work

Once you’ve gotten your foot in the door, it’s not exactly smooth sailing. The CDC is a government facility that deals with some incredibly hazardous materials. Not only is it important to be up to date on your government ethics, but it’s also necessary to adequately prepare for the job at hand. This means arriving with all of the required paperwork and making sure to call for enrollment after the verbal offer of employment. After that, you’ll be required to attend a new employee orientation that will prepare you for your first week at the center. If you can follow these steps and prove that you’re as good as your resume hinted you were, then you should have no problem fitting into your new role.

Ultimately, finding a job at the CDC depends on what qualifications you currently possess. Just as with any successful job search, it’s about managing your assets to the specific career path you’re interested in undertaking. The CDC has many fields that it seeks applicants for, so be sure to pursue the related degrees before applying and you’ll be well on your way to a satisfying job that you can look back with pride on.