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Air Interdiction Agent Application Process

Being an Air Interdiction Agent can be both mentally and physically challenging. As a result, the application process to become an Air Interdiction Agent is intentionally rigorous to ensure that those selected can carryout the duties that are expected of them. Click the arrow below to learn about basic eligibility.

Expand Basic Eligibility

In order to be eligible for employment with the CBP, applicants must:

  • Be a U.S. Citizen.
  • Have a valid driver's license.
  • Have resided in the U.S. for the last 3 years.
  • Be eligible to carry a firearm.
  • Referred for selection prior to your 40th birthday (waiver for veterans' preference eligible or those that have previously served in a federal civilian law enforcement position).
  • Be willing to travel; you will be required to travel frequently. This job may require extended domestic and foreign Temporary Duty (TDY) assignments.
  • Pass the application process (see details below).

Common Disqualifiers

You may be rated unsuitable for the Air Interdiction Agent position if your background includes:

  • Use of illegal drugs, and/or the sale and distribution of illegal drugs. View our FAQ on prior illegal drug use.
  • Convictions (including misdemeanor domestic violence charges)
  • Intentional harboring or concealment of an illegal alien

Expand Specific Air Interdiction Agent Qualifications

You qualify for the GS-11 grade level (starting salary $61,218 up to $79,586 with potential overtime) if you possess one year of specialized work experience that demonstrates the ability to:

  • Fly as a Pilot-in-Command or sole manipulator in an airplane and helicopter in all environments of flight, including night, poor weather, unfavorable terrain, low altitudes or speed;
  • Fly as a Pilot-in-Command or sole manipulator in an airplane and helicopter in all environments of flight, including night, poor weather, unfavorable terrain, low altitudes or speed;
  • Ability to valuate information rapidly and make judicious decisions promptly during in-flight operations;
  • Develop strategies and coordinate aircraft and ground assets;
  • Use information systems and databases to conduct information surveys, queries, update files and disseminate information

National Service Experience (i.e., volunteer experience) Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

Certificates, Ratings and Flight Experience:

You must possess and provide proof of the following, at time of application in order to meet the basic requirements of this position:

  • A current FAA Commercial or ATP Pilot Certification with the following ratings:

    • Dual Rated: Airplane (Single-engine land or multi-engine land) with instrument rating AND Rotorcraft Helicopter with instrument rating; OR
    • Airplane Rated: Airplane (Single-engine land or multi-engine land) with instrument; OR
    • Helicopter Rated: Rotorcraft Helicopter with instrument rating.
  • An FAA Medical Certificate First or Second Class. Either one must be dated within the last 12 calendar months and valid through the closing date of this announcement. However, at the time of your Flight Assessment you MUST have an FAA 1st Class Medical Certificate dated within the previous 12 calendar months. Military flight medicals cannot be used - you must possess an FAA 1st or 2nd class Medical certificate.
  • Submit the last page of your documented flight log reflecting a minimum of 1500 flight hours; apply at 750 flight hours*

    • 100 hours of Airplane, UAS and/or Helicopter within the last 12 months
    • 250 Pilot-in-Command hours and
    • 75 Instrument hours
    • 75 Night hours

Applicants may include UAS Predator A (MQ-1), Predator B (MQ-9), or Global Hawk (RQ-4) flight hours. Your full flight log will be required at time of your Flight Assessment for verification.

*Applicants applying at 750 flight hours are required to obtain at least 1,000 flight hours (depending on the number of hours approved for a waiver) at own expense before being able to attend the 3-part flight assessment. Must meet the required 100 flight hours within the last 12 months, 250 PIC, 75 instrument and 75 night hours.

You must meet all qualification requirements, by the closing date of this announcement. Qualifications are subject to verification at any stage of the application process.

Flight Hour Waiver:

The experience you use to request consideration for the Flight Hour Waiver (FHW) must be submitted at time of application. Please list all of your FHW experience on a sheet titled ‘Flight Hour Waiver Request'. Your request should include all of the following items: dates of experience, hours per week, title and a detailed description of experience. NOTE: The 100 hours in the last 12 months, 250 PIC, 75 instrument and 75 night hours cannot be waived.

8 steps in the process to employment. Note that several steps occur at the same time or may occur in a different order

Expand 1. Apply

Apply to be an Air Interdiction Agent on USAJOBS
To apply, navigate to the position you are interested in on USAJOBS by searching the position title or by finding the link on the Apply Now page. To begin your online application, you need to create a USA Jobs account and self certify that you are qualified. You will submit your resume, transcripts, and other documents to verify your age and if you are a veteran. Visit our Apply Now page to start your application today!

Expand 2. Qualifications Review

Submit a properly formatted resume on USAJOBS to ensure your qualifications are accurate
Human Resources Specialists will review your resume and other required documents to make sure you meet the minimum qualifications and determine what grade you qualify for. For your application to be reviewed quickly and accurately, it is recommended that you submit a resume that appropriately documents your qualifications, detailed description of your duties (including tasks performed), the dates you performed those duties (MM/DD/YYYY - MM/DD/YYYY) and hours worked per week. If your resume and/or transcripts do not clearly document how you are qualified, you may be rated ineligible.

Expand 3. Background Investigation

Air Interdiction applicants undergo a thorough background investigation
All selected applicants must undergo and successfully pass a background investigation as a condition of placement into a CBP position. The SF-86 or SF-85 (e-QIP) must be completed to initiate the background investigation. The background investigation process consists of four key elements: the preliminary vetting checks, the polygraph examination, the investigation (the field portion and OPM’s National Agency Checks) and the final adjudication. The results produced from the vetting checks, the polygraph exam, and the investigation are analyzed for the purpose of making a final adjudicative determination. Learn more about the background investigation.

View the detailed overview of CBP’s suitability process

Expand 4. Medical Exam

General Medical Requirements:

Individuals in this position must be medically and physically capable of performing the essential job functions and duties of the position safely and efficiently without aggravating existing health problems or endangering the health and safety of the individual, others, or national security.
After tentative selection, candidates must undergo a pre-employment medical examination and be found medically qualified to perform the position's full range of duties safely and efficiently. Any disease or condition that may potentially interfere with the safe and efficient performance of the job's duties or training may result in medical disqualification. No condition is automatically disqualifying; each determination is made on a case-by-case basis. The medical determination may involve recommendations for additional information and/or testing. If medical information is recommended beyond that provided by the initial medical examination, it is provided at the expense of the candidate.

Specific Medical Requirements:

Vision

  • Near vision, corrected or uncorrected, must be sufficient to read Jaeger type 2 at 14 inches.
  • Normal depth perception
  • Normal peripheral vision
  • Ability to distinguish shades of color by color plate tests
  • Refractive surgery/LASIK – minimum of 90 day recovery period following procedure, free from significant untoward side effects of surgery, e.g., glare, contrast sensitivity
  • Uncorrected distant vision must test 20/200 in each eye
  • Corrected distant vision must test 20/20 in one eye and 20/30 in the other

Hearing

  • Hearing loss must not exceed 30 dB in either ear in the 500, 1000, and 2000 Hz ranges. Applicants must be able to hear the whispered voice at 15 feet with each ear without the use of a hearing aid.

Expand 5. Fitness test

To ensure you are physically fit for the job, you are required to undergo the AIA Physical Fitness Test (PFT)

The PFT is required to ensure you are able to carry out the critical tasks of the job, such as use force. The test includes pushups, sit-ups and a step test. In order to help you prepared and successfully pass the PFT, CBP has created a six week standardized training program. View Current Applicant Resources to access the PFT Readiness Program, a guide to the PFT, and frequently asked questions regarding the fitness test.

Physical Fitness Test Minimum Requirements
Test Repetitions Time Frame
Sit-Ups 20 1 minute
Push-Ups 12 1 minute
12" Step 120 steps per minute 5 minutes

Expand 6. Drug Test

Air Interdiction Agents have direct responsibility and involvement with the interdiction of illegal narcotics, and are routinely exposed to illegal substances. During the application process you will be required to submit to a random drug test. Applicants that test positively are disqualified. View Current Applicant Resources for frequently asked questions regarding the drug test.

Expand 7. Polygraph Exam

The polygraph exam is a standardized polygraph exam, required by the Anti-Border Corruption Act of 2010. This is a 4-6 hour interview that requires you to respond to a series of questions typically relating to national security issues and answers you provide on your background investigations forms. The polygraph measures your physiological response when answering questions and results are subject to a quality control review for accuracy. Learn more about the polygraph exam.

Expand 8. Three Part Flight Assessment

You will be required to pass a three part assessment that consists of a 1) Oral evaluation, 2) Flight evaluation, and 3) Interview. The assessments will be conducted in Oklahoma City, OK will take approximately 1 full day beginning at 8:00am. Selectees will be responsible for all expenses associated with their travel, as well any lodging and/or personal expenses incurred.

Part 1) Applicants must complete and pass an oral evaluation.
This evaluation will test your pilot knowledge based on published regulations.

Part 2) Applicants must complete and pass a flight evaluation.
You will be required to demonstrate your flight proficiency in a CBP aircraft with a flight instructor. You will be evaluated based on Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Commercial Pilot standards.

Part 3) Applicants must complete and pass a structured interview.
You must be able to answer scenario based interview questions to demonstrate your possession of core competencies, which include Judgment/Decision Making, Teamwork/Interpersonal Skills, Flexibility, Integrity and Oral Communication.

For more information, view the AIA 3 Part Flight Assessment page.

Last modified: 
March 29, 2018
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