By Rachel Dhaliwal, GCDF, EQ-I 2.0
Senior Career Coach
For over 40 years, the Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) program with the U.S. Federal Government has provided extraordinary employment and leadership development opportunities to hundreds of finalists yearly. In fact, several of our alumni have become Presidential Management Fellowship Finalists.
What Is the Presidential Management Fellows Program?
The PMF program is open to graduate- and professional-level students and recent graduates in all academic disciplines. It is the federal government’s premier leadership development program at the entry-level.
Thousands of applicants compete to be selected for this two-year, full-time fellowship program each year, and it’s easy to see why. The fellowship includes:
- 160 hours of formal interactive training
- At least on four to six-month developmental assignment
- Rigorous leadership development and an individual development plan
- Assignment of a senior-level mentor
- Optional rotational opportunities
- Other potential appointment benefits, such as public transportation subsidies or the option to telework
- The opportunity to non-competitively convert to a term or permanent federal position upon successful completion of the PMF program requirements
If you completed a master’s or higher degree (such as a J.D. or Ph.D.) between September 13, 2020, and September 13, 2022, you are eligible to apply for the 2023 PMF Program. You can also apply if you will complete your current master’s or higher degree by August 31, 2023.
This year’s application window will be earlier than the previous years. The link to the application will be posted on USAJOBS.gov on Tuesday, September 13 at 12 noon ET, and it will close Tuesday, September 27 at 12 noon ET.
You do NOT need a USAJOBS.gov account to use the PMF application. However, the application takes several hours to complete, so do not wait until the last minute to apply.
A New Application Process This Year
This year, the application process has seen some significant changes. During the two-week application process, applicants must complete two timed online assessments within two hours. Once the application window closes, semi-finalists will be chosen based on their ability to meet eligibility requirements, complete applications and online assessment results.
Approximately three to four weeks later, semi-finalists will receive an email invitation to attend a structured panel interview. The panel members are made up of personnel from various government agencies and the Office of Personnel Management (OPM). This interview is expected to be approximately 30 minutes long and will be audio-only.
The PMF program administrators say that it will take about six to eight weeks for all interviews to be held. After that, PMF finalists will be chosen based on their interview results and the total number of finalists authorized for the year. Finalists will be announced by mid-February 2023.
After they become finalists, applicants will gain access to an exclusive job board. They will have one year from their selection date to find and secure a PMF appointment with a federal agency. Once the appointment begins, that person will be considered a Presidential Management Fellow, and their two-year fellowship will begin.
PMF Resources and Information
To learn more about the PMF program, including full eligibility requirements, how candidates are selected and what documents are needed to apply, visit the PMF website. This website also has resources and news.
If you are interested, I recommend thoroughly reading the PMF Applicant Handbook on the PMF program website. It is designed to provide a general overview of the program, the application process and the assessment process. This handbook will be a valuable tool in your preparation to apply.
PMF Open House Webinar on September 12
The PMF Program will host an open forum on September 12 from 2-4 p.m. ET for questions. This webinar is an opportunity for interested applicants to hear directly from the program personnel and ask questions. It is open to students and alumni of all disciplines.
I hosted an information webinar for our graduate students and alumni on August 18 at 1 p.m. ET. If you missed that webinar, here is a link to the recording. If you would like help with your resume or have further questions about the Presidential Management Fellows program, please reach out to Career Services.