Diversity/Careers in Engineering & Information Technology



December 2010/January 2011

Diversity/Careers December 2010/January 2011 Issue

Women of color in defense
Pharma & biotech
Systems engineers
LGBT in tech
NJIT honors Renard
Grace Hopper

Gov't agencies
Skire Corp
News & Views
Regional roundup
Supplier diversity

Diversity in action
News & Views

GE Healthcare

Diversity In Action

The Defense Intelligence Agency seeks diverse professionals

The agency finds that diversity in thought, culture and heritage, as well as in professions and skill sets, improves the intelligence process

Willie Kinsey III: Diversity is important because it improves the intelligence process.The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) needs technical people with diversified skill sets to support its mission as a major producer and manager of foreign military intelligence.

DIA is a Department of Defense (DOD) combat support agency and an important member of the United States intelligence community. It's the nation's principle source for military-related foreign intelligence, which it provides to war fighters, defense policymakers and force planners in the Department of Defense and the intelligence community, in support of U.S. military planning and operations and weapon systems acquisition.

"To support that mission, we employ a wide range of professions including intelligence officers, acquisition and contracting professionals, science and technology professionals, information technology specialists and program managers," says Willie Kinsey III, chief of the agency's staffing division.

The DIA is headquartered at the Pentagon, and has other operational activities at the Defense Intelligence Analysis Center (DIAC, Washington, DC), the National Center for Medical Intelligence (NCMI, Frederick, MD), the Missile and Space Intelligence Center (MSIC, Huntsville, AL), and combatant command locations worldwide. The agency's workforce is a mix of DOD civilian employees, soldiers, sailors, Air Force people and marines.

The DIA employs engineers of many types, including specialties like biological engineers and ChEs. They all work to detect and deter threats to the nation, Kinsey says. Pros in the IT division maintain the agency's IT infrastructure and conduct intelligence analysis on cyber-oriented threats. They range from recent college grads to retired military veterans with an interest in foreign affairs, international studies or political science.

In the last five years DIA has worked to increase female and minority representation. Its workforce is now 30 percent minorities and 36 percent women. Diversity in thought, culture and heritage is important because it improves the intelligence process, Kinsey notes.

The agency offers its employees the full scope of Federal benefits: flexible work schedules, sick leave, mass transportation benefits and more.

DIA's projected hiring for experienced engineers and IT pros will grow in the near term with the opening of a new facility in Charlottesville, VA, Kinsey says. "Our continued growth will mirror the growth of diverse professionals within the federal government."

The DIA is particularly interested in people with foreign and regional language proficiency to help in its collection and analysis of worldwide intelligence to support national decision-makers and military commanders. Employees who reach appropriate levels of proficiency in foreign languages may get bonuses depending on the level of proficiency and the importance of the language to the DIA's mission.

Applicants for DIA jobs must be U.S. citizens and pass security background investigations. Language proficiencies and veteran status, if any, should be clearly noted on the application, Kinsey advises.

DIA has several college-oriented programs to attract students of all ages to the agency: needs-based tuition assistance for high-achieving undergrad students, a collegiate co-op program, internships, and programs that provide intensive intelligence training.

In promoting its "ethnically, culturally, professionally and cognitively" diverse workforce, the DIA and its equal opportunity office sponsor diversity councils and taskforces as well as mentoring programs. Employee groups include FEW (Federally Employed Women), BIG (Blacks in Government), LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens), SAIGE (Society of American Indian Government Employees) and more.

Special emphasis programs are also part of equal opportunity at the DIA. Their goals are to improve employment and advancement opportunities for historically underrepresented groups: Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, African Americans, women, Hispanics, Native Americans and people with disabilities.


Defense Intelligence Agency
Defense Intelligence Agency

Headquarters: The Pentagon, Washington, DC
Employees: 16,500
Business: U.S. combat support agency and member of the U.S. intelligence community

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