CBP: Help wanted

By Max Cacas

The job of protecting the nation’s borders, airports and cargo ports is never-ending.

The agency responsible for securing the nation’s avenues of entry recently came looking for candidates to be Customs and Border Protection officers at the Arlington County (Va.) Employment Center.

CBP is a branch of the Department of Homeland Security.


On this day, CBP Officer Mark Block, who is normally posted to the international terminal at Washington Dulles International Airport, is instead doing brief presentations before job seekers who have come to the county’s job center on Wilson Boulevard in Clarendon.

“We’re recruiting for customs officers in the field,” he explained in an interview, “and we have openings at Dulles, so we’re hiring locally in this area, and we’re making a push in this area.”

Block explains that candidates with a previous career in law enforcement are highly sought after, and that such experience means, “you can get hired as a GS-7, versus a GS-5. You know what you’ll have to do at the acacemy, what the hours are, and what you’ll do on the job.”

Block says that along with being physically fit, you have to be able to deal with people, have a clear background, be a U.S. citizen, and be able to carry a sidearm.

Officer Block says he tells prospective applicants that he finds the job “rewarding” every day, and that he gets to do search and seizure work that normal law enforecement agencies don’t normally get to do.

On the Web:

DHS – CBP Careers Spotlight

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