Federal, State, Local, and Tribal Government

The U.S. Federal Government is the nation’s largest employer and offers challenging experiences, competitive salary, and generous benefits. State, local, and tribal governments provide a wide variety of job opportunities as well.

Getting Started

When applying to federal positions, understand that each department and agency makes independent hiring decisions. The application and hiring process is also a very long one, sometimes taking up to a year or more. In addition to the lengthy application review process, gaining security clearance might be part of the hiring process. Because of these factors, begin the job search as early as 10 months prior to the anticipated start date.

Just as with work in the federal government, the requirements for state, local, and tribal positions vary. Some jobs may require a certain degree or discipline, though the majority of positions do not. Skills that are highly valued in all forms of government work include: analytical skills, research, creative thinking and problem solving, and writing and communication. GovLoop provides guidance on how to navigate the job search for state and local government positions.


Nearly all federal agencies post their positions through the federal government’s main online job resource, USAJobs.gov, and each agency or department may post employment opportunities on their respective websites. USAJobs.gov provides information on available jobs, instructions regarding writing a federal resume, and highlights the benefits of working for the federal government. The website shares thousands of job postings, ranging from opportunities for recent college graduates to seasoned professionals. Review the General Schedule (GS) Pay Scale to determine which positions best aligns with your qualifications. The GS Pay Scale classifies payment based on a candidate’s qualifications. Visit GoGovernment for advice on finding, and applying for, federal government jobs. OCS highly recommends that you create saved searches based on your areas of interest that are sent to you on a daily basis since many federal government jobs/internships are open for a short window. This 30 second video shows you how to save your search once you are logged into USAJobs.

Subscribe and Follow

Several federal departments and agencies advertise opportunities via social media and regularly-scheduled newsletters. Subscribe to their newsletters and follow them on Social Media. Sometimes, agencies and departments will give a very short window of notice of upcoming deadlines for open positions. Here is an alphabetical  list of all U.S. Government Departments and Agencies.

Below are links to some specific agency subscription pages:

Considerations for State, Local, & Tribal

Professional contacts and hands-on experience can be a tremendous asset when securing state, local, and tribal government jobs. Consider contacting a state representative’s office, or visiting a local government office in person or online, to begin to build professional contacts and explore job opportunities. Conducting informational interviews can be a valuable step toward learning more about what it takes to work, and secure a position, within state, local, or tribal government. Many members of congress are Yale alums. Students who are interested in pursuing congressional internships with other members of congress can explore Congress.gov to find the names, contact information, and websites for the collective body of legislators.

Other Helpful Resources to utilize:
U.S. House of Representatives – Positions with Members & Committees
U.S. Senate Employment Page
U.S. Senate Employment Bulletin
Weekly Congressional Paper – The Hill 


While federal, state, local, and tribal government websites are an excellent resource, the best way to find a job in this sector of government is likely through professional contacts. Developing and maintaining professional relationships by networking within government may provide job seekers firsthand knowledge of job openings not posted on any website. Visit The Leadership Connect to search for contacts. It allows you to search by Congress, Federal Government, State / Local Government, Lobbying Firms and more. You can then filter further by Education and enter Yale to find alumni. Visit Legistorm for additional contacts where you can also filter by Education to find contact information of Staff Assistants and Yale alumni. Both resources are available to all Yale students through Yale University online library resources.

Public Service: Responsible Engagement

For those interested in public service work, whether that be through structured internship programs, post-graduate employment, community service, or volunteer work, it’s important to think about what responsible engagement looks like.

Review this page on Planning Public Service Projects to learn more about what responsible engagement looks like and how you can develop a plan that aligns well for you and the community you are hoping to serve.

AI Resume Review and Mock Interviews: Big Interview

Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) is a term you may have heard of, and if not, you will soon.

Through the Big Interview AI Resume Review, students can upload their draft resume and a job description and receive an ATS review, …

By Yale Office of Career Strategy
Yale Office of Career Strategy
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2023 Public Service Internship and Scholarship Program of CAPAL (Conference on Asian and Pacific American Leadership)

The Conference on Asian and Pacific American Leadership (CAPAL) is now accepting applications for the 2023 Public Service Internship and Scholarship Program. This paid program includes weekly leadership seminars, Community Action Projects, and individual mentorship

CAPAL’s Public Service …

By Ya Hsien Cheng
Ya Hsien Cheng Assistant Director of Employer Relations
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Don’t let the fear of too many emails keep you from being in the (k)now

Personalize YOUR Office of Career Strategy Newsletter
How do I Customize my Newsletter?
Current Yale Students and Yale Faculty/Staff: 

Yale Alumni, Prospective Students and other Guests: Sign Up Here

By Stephanie DelVento
Stephanie DelVento Senior Administrative Assistant, Health Professions Advising/STEM Connect
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Common Good Careers Advising continues to be available all summer!

Still seeking a job in a common good career? Continuing to pursue a summer internship in nonprofit or government? Perhaps you want to make sure you are making the most of your summer internship or plan ahead for the fall. …

By Robyn Acampora
Robyn Acampora Director of Strategic Initiatives and Public Service Careers
Read more »

Leverage SEA Funding to Secure a Summer Opportunity

The 2024 Summer Experience Award application will open on Dec 1, 2023

Yale College students who receive any amount of financial aid from Yale are eligible to use their Summer Experience Award (SEA) to help with the expenses of an …

By Yale Office of Career Strategy
Yale Office of Career Strategy
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Alumni Spotlights

Featured Resources

In an effort to support students pursuing careers in the nonprofit, government and the arts sectors or those who plan …

Explore Job Market InsightsIn partnership withLightcast logo

Search continually updated U.S. market trends to learn about job types (job functions), growth trends, and desired skills. The results will include general information about each job (functional area), employment trends from the past two years and projections for the next 10 years, employers that have that role, desired education level, skills for the position, and more!


  1. Find Career Data by Selecting Keywords: Enter keywords of various job titles and choose a state or search nationwide to learn more about that job.
  2. Filter by Industry and Occupation: Search by industry and choose among popular occupations/job titles within that industry.

First, choose an industry of interest, then filter for occupation. (If you'd like to see data for a specific location only, filter by state.)

Type in a keyword to select a relevant occupation. (If you'd like to see data for a specific location only, filter by state.)

Community Resources

YC Career Outcomes

The Office of Career Strategy collects information about Yale College graduates. This tool allows users to search outcomes by year and major. Please visit Statistics & Reports for detailed reports.

Helpful Tips on using the Interactive Tool:

  • There is no Enter or Submit Button  Results will appear automatically with your selections
  • Choose ‘All Years’ or ‘All Majors’- For results across years and majors or check one for more granular results.
    • Default results will show the most recent Class Year.
    • Uncheck the selected major(s) to reset your search.
    • To ensure student confidentiality, results are only reported in the aggregate and more granular data is not available through this public tool.
    • The tool will return results with at least five responses. If you require additional information contact the Office of Career Strategy
    • First Destination Summaries are based on the knowledge rate of graduate outcomes six months after graduation under the guidelines set by the National Association of Colleges and Employers.

Most Recent Class Overview

Knowledge Rate Success Rate Mean Starting Salary Top Five Industries
86.8% of those graduating between July 1, 2020-June 30, 2021 96.9% employed or in graduate school within six months of graduation $76,359 among graduates employed in the United States. Financial Services, Education, Technology, Consulting, and Healthcare


  • First Destination
  • Top Employers
  • Employment Industry and Function
  • Size of the Organization
  • Starting Salary
  • Time of Year Offer Received
  • Internships, Research, and Study Abroad Experiences
  • First Destination Locations
  • Top Universities
  • Advanced Degrees Pursued

First Destination

First Destination refers to the postgraduate plans of Yale College graduates six months after graduation. The pursuits of Yale graduates include employment, graduate school, independent research, military service, and more.


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