Renewed interest in the public sector

Friday - 3/20/2009, 3:26pm EDT

Amy Morris

As heard on WTOP

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By Amy Morris
Executive Editor
FederalNewsRadio

Working for the government is apparently more appealing than ever. Word today that more undergrads and MBA graduates are turning to the federal government for jobs.

Q: Why the sudden, renewed interest?

A: The draw is threefold. First, these are young people who were really excited by the recent presidential campaign and the opportunity to make a difference and be part of history. Also, the economy is such that the private sector isn't really hiring a lot of MBA's. But there ARE jobs available in the federal government...and these people have bills and student loans to pay. Also, the federal government has been actively reaching out to college campuses and really pushing for more young blood in public service. The latest stats from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that employment in the private finance sector dropped 3.6 percent last month from the year earlier, but employment in the federal government rose 4.3 percent.

Q: What agencies are hiring?

A: You'll find more than 4,000 jobs up for grabs at the IRS alone. But that is NOT the only agency looking for young people with business skills. Department of Defense, Agriculture, Veterans Affairs, HUD, General Services Administration -- all need people who can handle budgets, accounting, acquisition, contracting, and auditing. A lot of this is because of the stimulus, AND remember - Recovery.gov. They need people who can help them keep track of all this new money.

Q: When will these jobs be available?

A: Right now. It isn't clear how fast the government will be able to hire people, but NOW is the time for people to start looking and getting their applications in. To do that, you have to go to USAJobs.gov. Keep checking back, too, because they're going to be adding even more jobs as the stimulus money starts moving.

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