NSA Overview The professionals at the National Security Agency (NSA) have one common goal: to protect our nation. The mission requires a strong offense and a steadfast defense. The offense collects, processes and disseminates intelligence information derived from foreign signals for intelligence and counterintelligence purposes. The defense prevents adversaries from gaining access to sensitive classified national security information. The National Security Agency (NSA) Office of General Counsel (OGC) is seeking superior Honors Program applicants who are interested in joining its elite team of lawyers who provide legal advice to the Agency as it carries out its missions. At NSA OGC, you will analyze cutting-edge technical and intelligence issues and will frequently provide legal advice that relates to high-profile current events affecting our national security. Attorneys working in NSA OGC apply their expertise, skills, and education to solve a variety of challenges not found in the private sector or at any other government agency. You will have the opportunity to make a global impact on a daily basis as you work with other top caliber professionals at the highest levels of the Agency and across the U.S. Government. This critical work ensures that Agency operations comply with the law while also protecting both our national security and our civil liberties. NSA is the only entity in the U.S. Government charged with collecting foreign signals intelligence in support of the nation's efforts to counter the increasingly dangerous threats to U.S. security posed by terrorism, cyber actors, weapons of mass destruction, and hostile foreign governments. In addition, NSA is also charged with the protection of U.S. national security systems, including Department of Defense worldwide computer networks and other systems. In conducting these vital missions, NSA relies upon personnel with world-class technical and professional expertise. Because the twin missions of NSA - signals intelligence and cybersecurity ' are two of the most important and dynamic challenges our Government faces today, there is rarely a typical day for an NSA attorney. We are routinely presented with exciting and novel legal issues at the intersection of technology and law. In tackling these challenges, our attorneys work directly with senior officials at the Department of Justice's National Security Division, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Council at the White House, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the Department of Defense, as well as other agencies in the Executive Branch and relevant committees of Congress. NSA attorneys work in a highly classified setting and are entrusted with tremendous responsibility as they advise the Director and other senior leaders at the Agency on a diverse and complex spectrum of issues related to gathering the foreign intelligence information needed to fight international terrorism, espionage, transnational crime, and narcotics, to defeat foreign cyber adversaries trying to steal national secrets, and to provide intelligence support to critical military overseas tactical operations, all while protecting our civil liberties and ensuring strict compliance with the Constitution and our laws. Because the NSA is a Department of Defense agency, our attorneys have a unique opportunity to be directly involved in national security operations working alongside military and civilian colleagues, as well as to interact with the private sector in cybersecurity and other matters. In short, many OGC attorneys say they can't imagine working in a more exciting and important position. Description of Position NSA OGC is looking for highly motivated entry-level attorneys to join its Legal Honors Program in Fall 2021. The Legal Honors Program is NSA OGC's exclusive entry-level attorney hiring program. The Program is a three-year term appointment that includes rotations in both operational and support practice areas. NSA OGC has seven legal practice groups, which provide legal advice on legislation, intelligence operations, cybersecurity, ethics, procurement, research and development, litigation, environmental law, patents, personnel security, and employment issues. For additional information on NSA OGC, please refer to the OGC webpage on NSA.gov, https://www.nsa.gov/about/ogc/. With appropriate training and supervision, NSA Honors Program attorneys are entrusted with immediate responsibility, working directly with clients and Agency leadership. Attorneys selected for the Legal Honors Program will also have special opportunities, available only to Honors Program attorneys, to attend high-level security briefings, meetings, and congressional hearings on national security issues, liaise directly with intelligence community partners and other federal agencies, and tour facilities throughout the intelligence community, all while working under the guidance and mentorship of a senior attorney assigned to them from among the leadership of NSA OGC. Honors attorneys will be well positioned at the close of their three-year term to apply successfully for a full-time attorney position within NSA OGC or to utilize the skills acquired during the Program to launch a career outside of the Agency in national security law or other legal disciplines. The responsibilities of an Attorney at the NSA can include: - Advising the Agency on legal matters involving a particular subject matter (e.g., intelligence operations, procurement, research and development, information security, patents, security matters, legislation, employment/personnel issues, ethics) - Analyzing legislation, programs, policies, regulations, or plans to determine impact on the Agency - Representing the Agency's official position in legal and legislative proceedings - Representing the Agency in interactions with outside customers, DoD, Congressional representatives, foreign partners, or the general public - Conferring with/educating clients, customers, or stakeholders on legal or policy issues - Determining the legal sufficiency of documents - Drafting legal briefs, pleadings, etc - Making legal determinations in accordance with laws, regulations, professional standards, or Agency policies and procedures
The Office of General Counsel (OGC) is the exclusive NSA component responsible for providing legal services to all NSA elements. The Office of General Counsel protect NSA's interests concerning the legal and regulatory authorities, requirements, entitlements, obligations and oversight requirements under which the Agency operate.
Salary Range: $72,030 - $112,240 (Full Performance) *The qualifications listed are the minimum acceptable to be considered for the position. Salary offers are based on candidates' education level and years of experience relevant to the position and also take into account information provided by the hiring manager/organization regarding the work level for the position. Selections are made based on many elements of a candidate's background including: strong academic achievement, law review or moot court experience, superior writing and communication skills, past employment, a demonstrated commitment to government service, leadership, legal aid and clinical experience, and extracurricular activities. Eligibility is limited to: - Law students graduating at the end of fall semester of 2020 or the spring semester of 2021 with no prior legal experience (other than summer associate or intern positions); or - Law school graduates from 2019 or 2020 who are seeking their first legal position following a judicial clerkship or graduate law program that commenced immediately after law school graduation. Applicants must be graduates of a law school accredited by the American Bar Association. New law school graduates must, within 14 months of the commencement of their employment, pass a bar examination and become duly licensed to practice as an attorney in a U.S. state, territory, or the District of Columbia. Applicants who are currently in a judicial clerkship or graduate law program must, prior to commencement of employment, be members in good standing of the bar of a U.S. state, territory, or the District of Columbia.***
The ideal candidate is highly-motivated with excellent oral and written communication skills, a desire for continual learning, possesses problem-solving, analytic, and interpersonal skills, and is: - detail-oriented - customer and results oriented - able to adjust to changing situational requirements - able to build relationships across the Agency and with external stakeholders - able to manage multiple tasks with competing timelines and deliverables
This is a full-time position, Monday through Friday. The selected candidate may be eligible for non-competitive conversion to a permanent appointment at a later date.