5 Important Things to Know about US Border Patrol Careers

If you desire to work for the US Border Patrol (USBP), it is crucial that you understand the education requirements, training, duties, and salary scales related to the organization. The U.S. Border Patrol is an agency within the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). US Border Patrol staff are uniformed law enforcement employees of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) who guard the 8,000 miles United States boundaries.

1. Education Qualifications 

A bachelor’s degree in law enforcement courses is necessary to work for the federal agency. Further, participation in sports teams, physical education during your school years to enhance an endurance character, competitive spirit and agility is an advantage.

Once accepted into the CBP, you undergo a 55-days comprehensive induction into the agency operations U.S. Border Patrol Academy based in Artesia, New Mexico. The academy curriculum comprises the courses below.

  • Nationality and immigration laws
  • Fitness lessons
  • Shooting skills
  • Spanish
  • Advanced driver training

The college administrators will administer a test to determine the applicant’s proficiency in Spanish. Candidates who cannot speak Spanish but have the potential to learn the language can gain admission.

2. Career Requirements

USBP only admits the citizens below 40 years and hold a United States driver’s license. The interviewing panel will conduct a comprehensive background check on your character, honesty, level of responsibility, and ability to make sensible conclusions, according to The New York Times. You must pass medical exams, a drug, polygraph, and fitness tests. Random drug tests can follow even after your admission and employment. If you have a history of poor credit, drug abuse, alcohol addiction, arrest or conviction for criminal behavior, you cannot qualify for the federal agency’s job.

3. Salary Scales

Border patrol agents perform different job responsibilities. USBP agents educational qualifications range from college diplomas to university master’s degrees. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection hiring levels are as follows.

  • GL-5: GL-5, the lowest entry level requires a bachelor’s degree qualification in any study. Applicants with a background in leadership, public service, and working in stressful situations stand a better admission opportunity.
  • GL-7: A minimum of one-year experience in law enforcement will earn you employment at GL-7 level, according to The Boston Globe. GL-7 also requires the knowledge to use firearms, informant networks, and skills to arrest people. The other pertinent conditions for this job group is the ability to handle the public courteously, make the right decisions quickly, and act within the confines of the law always. A bachelor’s degree postgraduate studies in the criminal justice system can substitute the lack of job experience.
  • GL-9: Experience is key to gaining entrance to this level.

4. JobDuties

USBP staff protects the U.S. sea, land, and airspace boundaries. You feel proud that your job enhances the stability and safety of the United States and citizens. Several other responsibilities rest on your shoulders.

  • Confiscating smuggled or illegal goods
  • You can work as a guard-post officer or border patrol aircraft pilot
  • Identify and turn away undocumented immigrants
  • Identify terrorists and immigrant smugglers
  • Watch the U.S. border from concealed areas and take action when electronic sensor television systems detect illegal behavior
  • Arrest the people engaging in illegal activities

5. Career Options

Degree holders can become supervisors, analysts, program managers, administrative officers, or legal counsels within the USBP. USBP offers various jobs to graduates in photography, audio-visual studies. Agricultural specialists may work as narcotics, prohibited animals or birds detection experts.

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USBP receive good compensation. The officers also benefit from the Thrift Saving Plan, health insurance, annual pay increases, living allowance, employee providence fund and life insurance. An end-of-service retirement package is part of the employment terms too.