Department of Defense Senior Service Schools

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Department of Defense Senior Service Schools

Additional Program Information:

The Department of Defense enables employees to obtain their masters’ degree in a number of academic fields.  The programs are 10 to 11 months in-residence opportunities. The available programs include:

  • Air War College (AWC)
  • Industrial College of the Armed Forces (ICAF)
  • Joint Forces Staff College (JFSC)
  • National War College (NWC)
  • U.S. Army Command and General Staff College (ACGS)
  • U.S. Army War College (USAWC)
  • U.S. Marine Corps University (USMCU)
  • U.S. Naval War College (USNWC)

For additional Graduate and Master’s Program information and eligibility requirements, please review the Fact Sheet.


  • Permanent, full-time employees at the GS-14 and above level.
  • Exceptional GS-13 permanent, full-time employees may apply for the following programs:  Army College and Staff College; Joint Forces Staff College; Marine Corps University-Command and Staff College; and, U.S. Naval War College-Naval Command and Staff College.  An exceptional GS-13:
    • Has demonstrated the ability to supervise or lead a team such as assigning and monitoring work, maintaining workflow;
    • Is responsible for strategic and operational planning;
    • Has the ability to prepare reports, correspondence and other communications;
    • Has demonstrated the ability to work effectively under time constraints and in stressful situations; and,
    • Has the ability to communicate well, both in writing and orally.
  • At least 1 year of service with the Department and/or FEMA
  • Achieved at least “Meets Expectations” or equivalent on their last performance appraisal
  • Obtained a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university.  Consideration is given to those who already have a master’s degree.
  • Currently hold and be able to maintain a Secret Clearance.  Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information (TS/SCI) clearance may be required for certain schools, electives, and/or briefings. 

Selected participants will be obligated to sign a 30 month Continued Service Agreement.


Tuition and fees are funded by DHS and Department of Defense.  The participant’s office, directorate or region is responsible for all travel and per diem or temporary moving expenses.    The Career Development and Training Branch does not provide funding support for travel associated with this program. 

Nomination Requirements:

Eligible employees must complete a DHS/DOD Application.  Employees applying to more than one school must submit an application for each school of interest.  Submit completed application(s) including Official Transcripts (1 official and 1 unofficial) from the institution awarding the highest degree, Letter of Recommendations and Standard Form (SF-182) to Dynia Beaty:

Portals III Building

1201 Maryland Avenue, SW

Washington, D.C.  20472-3715

Selection Process:

All interested, eligible applicants must submit to the FEMA internal review process.  All applications are reviewed by FEMA’s Executive Review Board (ERB).  The ERB recommends to the Administrator’s Office the candidate(s) they feel should be endorsed for further consideration by the Department and school.  The Administrator’s Office has the final approval of FEMA endorsed candidates.  The endorsed list of candidates is forwarded to the DHS Chief Learning Office for an additional screening and DHS endorsement.  Candidates endorsed by DHS will be forwarded to the school for final selections.  DHS endorsements do not guarantee selection.

Nomination Deadline:

December 3, 2012

Point of Contact:

Dynia Beaty,, 202-212-2084

Last Updated: 
07/24/2014 - 16:00
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