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The U.S. president's security guards are known as Secret Service special agents. They must complete extensive training before being allowed to work at the White House or on presidential details. After applicants are accepted and complete many months of training, only the best agents are accepted for this top security duty.
Apply to the Secret Service. Most agents must have college degrees and pass an extensive background check before being appointed. Top-secret background checks take six to nine months to complete. Once the background check is passed, new agents are appointed on an as-needed basis.
Begin training at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, Georga. Prospective agents enrolled in a 10-week criminal investigator training program. You will learn a general foundation for all the agency training that will follow, including investigative techniques and criminal law.
Attend the Secret Service training academy. You will be assigned to a 17-week training course outside Washington, D.C. You will learn about investigations and protection and specialize in Secret Service procedures and policies. Some of the coursework covers emergency medicine, physical protection techniques, marksmanship, physical fitness, water survival skills, intelligence investigations and protective advances.
Move on to your assignment, and continue with training. You will have continuing education in emergency medicine and firearms use. You will train in simulated training scenarios that mimic possible real-world emergencies that might happen with those you are assigned to protect.
Take continuing education courses in leadership, ethics, diversity and supervision to keep current on the Secret Service and its personnel. Agents are evaluated often, and only those with the highest scores qualify for the prestigious Presidential Protection detail.
- United States Secret Service: Frequently Asked Questions
- "In the President's Secret Service," Ronald Kessler, Crown Publishing, 2009
Working in sunny Florida, Anne Baley has been writing professionally since 2009. Her home and lifestyle articles have been seen on Coldwell Banker and Gardening Know How. Baley has published a series of books teaching how to live a frugal life with style and panache.