The role of the Secret Service is to protect the President, the Vice-President, and any other member of the Presidential party. Agents also are assigned to protect the immediate families of the aforementioned. They will protect former presidents, their spouses and children up to the age of 16. They also protect any diplomatic personnel from abroad who come to visit the United States. The Secret Service are also required to protect any national special security events.
A prospective agent must be between the ages of 21 and 37. He or she must be a US citizen, possess a current driver’s license, and must have 20/40 vision in each eye, or 20/20 corrected in each eye.
To become a Secret Service agent requires in-depth training. Once candidates are hired as Secret Service agents, they are sent to the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, GA. Here they will start a 10-week training program in criminal investigation. This is where they will learn studies such as criminal law and investigative techniques.
After completing the 10-week course, trainees will then enter a 17-week special agent training course. This course is held at the James J. Rowley Training Center. This training center is located just outside of Washington DC. This course teaches investigation and protection procedures. One course of study is combating federal financial crimes such as counterfeiting. The course also teaches protective intelligence investigations, physical protection technique, and emergency medicine. The course teaches trainees marksmanship skills, control tactics, and water survival skills. Physical fitness is also part of the training course.
Once the 17-week course is finished, agents are assigned to field duty. If agents last one year of field duty, they will be assigned as permanent agents.
Secret Service agents receive advanced training throughout their careers. This training consists of re-qualification of firearms and re-certification of emergency medicine. If agents are assigned to protective assignments, then they have to participate in crisis training scenarios.
Training is not just limited to the field, agents also have to participate in a number of management courses. Some of these course may consist of ethics, leadership, and introduction to supervision.
The Secret Service will pay for housing for trainees in the 10-week course in Georgia. Only trainees whose permanent duty station is outside of Washington DC is provided housing while attending the 17-week special agent training course.
If all qualifications and requirements are passed, a Secret Service agent career can be very rewarding. An agent is one of the heroes of government.
Once Secret Service Training is completed, there are a wide variety of jobs available to those seeking them.