How do I apply? What materials do I need to submit?
When positions are available, apply to the Honors Paralegal Program by completing an online application. Read the instructions carefully, and submit all forms that apply to you. For more detailed instructions, see our How to Apply page.
If we wish to contact you for an interview, we will do so directly. Once we make final hiring decisions, the Human Resources Specialist for the vacancy will notify you. Please note that we typically receive many applications in response to our vacancy postings and it can take several weeks and sometimes months to make final selections.
What is a typical day for an FTC Honors Paralegal?
Honors Paralegals manage a workload that consists of both short- and long-term projects. These projects include a wide variety of tasks to support the work of the agency, including analyzing records for substantive or confidential information, drafting memorandums for senior staff, communicating with outside parties, or preparing court documents. Additionally, Honors Paralegals may help in preparing for conferences covering a broad range of issues including emerging technologies and the development of certain industries. The FTC also holds lectures that discuss a variety of antitrust and consumer protection issues. Honors Paralegals often help in the organization of and are encouraged to attend such events.
There are three paralegal supervisors, one for the Bureau of Competition, one for Bureau of Consumer Protection, and one for Office of the General Counsel. Attorneys or investigators in each bureau or office request assistance through the appropriate paralegal supervisor. The supervisor reviews workloads and determines the appropriate tasks assigned to each paralegal. If a paralegal is interested in a particular topic, supervisors will work to give him or her a particular assignment when possible. Most Honors Paralegals juggle both long- and short-term assignments at any given time. Good communication between attorneys, Honors Paralegals, and the paralegal supervisors helps to ensure a rewarding experience.
After their term appointment at the FTC, where do Honors Paralegals typically go next?
FTC Honors Paralegals are a diverse group with a wide variety of interests. Some will continue on to law school after their time at the FTC; others may continue working or pursue a different field. Aside from law, Honors Paralegals have also gone on to pursue degrees in public policy, business, journalism, or other graduate programs. The program is well-suited to those who want to go to law school as well as those who do not. Because of the variety of assignments, Honors Paralegals perform work that is directly law related as well as tasks that are more policy oriented. Term employees who wish to continue working for the government in other positions may apply for those positions.
Each Bureau or Office has experienced/senior Honors Paralegals (generally one with at least a year of FTC experience) who assume informal mentoring roles. These paralegal mentors serve as resources for information about working at the FTC, paralegal duties, and transitioning to life in Washington, D.C. Finally, the Bureaus of Competition and Consumer Protection have formal mentoring programs that are open to paralegals. In addition, the Honors Paralegals work closely with attorneys and investigators who share institutional knowledge and expertise, and allow Honors Paralegals to broaden their skills, knowledge, and perspectives so that they are better prepared for future career opportunities and challenges.
A series of formal training sessions are held throughout the year for Honors Paralegals. However, because Honors Paralegals perform a wide variety of assignments, not everything can be covered during training. Honors Paralegals will also learn a great deal on the job from senior paralegals and other agency staff.
The starting salary for a term appointed GS-7 Paralegal is $42,209 in 2010. This salary is adjusted each year according to the government’s pay scale. For a complete list of salaries for the D.C. area, click here.
During their first 3 years with the government, Federal employees earn 13 days of vacation leave as well as 13 days of sick leave. In addition, Federal employees get a number of paid holidays each year.For more information on annual and sick leave policies, click here.
Yes. Federal term employees are eligible for benefits through the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program. Federal employees, retirees, and their survivors enjoy a wide selection of health plans.For more information on different healthcare plans, click here.
Comparable to a private-sector tax-deferred 401(k) plan, the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) is an important benefit designed to help you save for your future. FTC employees can contribute as much as 15% of basic pay each pay period, up to the IRS annual limit. 1. Agency Automatic (1%) Contributions: When you become eligible, your agency automatically deposits into your TSP account an amount equal to 1% of your basic pay each pay period, even if you do not contribute your own money. After 3 years of Federal civilian service (or 2 years in some cases), you are vested in these contributions and their earnings. 2. Agency Matching Contributions: When you become eligible, your agency will match the first 3% of basic pay you contribute each pay period dollar for dollar. Each dollar of the next 2% of basic pay will be matched 50 cents on the dollar. You are immediately vested in the matching contributions. For more information on the TSP and your investment options, click here.