DI analysts have a variety of assignment options available
and can take on a range of different challenges as part
of their growth and development as intelligence officers.
All new analysts will spend four months in the Career
Analyst Program, where they receive a grounding
in analytic tradecraft and methods. Most also can expect
to spend part of their first two years serving a tour
in the 24/7 Operations Center, the Agency’s nerve
center, or a temporary assignment on a task force to
support US military operations.
From there, analysts can consider a number of options
to deepen their expertise as intelligence professionals
– an overseas tour in an Embassy, an assignment
on a different substantive area, or full-time language
or academic training. Tailored developmental programs
that combine academic study, travel, and in-depth research
on a country or topic also are available on a competitive
basis. In addition, analysts may consider assignments
that broaden their knowledge of the intelligence business,
such as a tour in a different directorate or another
agency within the Intelligence Community.
As an individual becomes more skilled in analytic tradecraft
and builds substantive depth, assignment options include
a policy agency, such as State Department or the Department
of Defense. Officers have many opportunities to stretch
their skills in more corporate assignments, such as
teaching at the Kent
School, working in the Office
of Policy Support as a PDB editor or serving as
a briefer to senior policymakers. Broadening assignments
elsewhere in CIA—such as a tour on the Inspector
General’s staff or in the Office of Congressional
Affairs—also are options for more seasoned analysts.
In addition, senior officers can opt to serve as DI
or DCI Representatives in overseas postings or at military
All analysts who choose a career in the Agency have
the option of remaining in the analytical track or can
choose a path that leads to management responsibilities.
Both choices offer challenging opportunities and similar
rewards in terms of advancement. There usually are aspects
of most assignments that build skills for either track,
and analysts can explore their interest and aptitude
for management through training and assignment opportunities
after their first few years in the organization.
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