Friday, May 25, 2012

"So Will You Be, Like, a Secret Agent?"

As we have shared the news about my entering the Foreign Service, many people have asked me just what the heck it is I will be doing over there (wherever "over there" might be). They think I will be in a tuxedo at some cultural event (the striped-pants cookie-pusher scenario), or in some tactical gear springing an American out of a Locked Up Abroad-type jail. My job as a vice-consul will involve three main tasks: issuing visas (or denying them) to potential visitors to our country, doing the same for immigrants, and providing services to American citizens should they run into difficulties while abroad. For a good picture of how Consular work goes in one of the countries most important to our own, take a look at this video from the PBS television show To The Contrary. The part about Foreign Service Officers begins at about the 11 minute mark, and after the video package comes a studio interview with someone in the Bureau of Consular Affairs.


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