Agency Representatives
Looking for information about the Pathways Programs? Click here.

Pathways Programs Information
for Colleges and Universities

Students and recent graduates now have three clear paths to internships and full-time employment in the federal government.

Established by Executive Order 13562, “Recruiting and Hiring Students and Recent Graduates,” the Pathways Programs provide talented individuals who are in school or who have recently received a degree with greater access to federal jobs and internships, as well as meaningful training, mentoring and career development opportunities.

Comprised of the Internship Program, Recent Graduates Program and Presidential Management Fellows Program, the Pathways Programs are not only helping federal agencies to become more competitive in recruiting top talent, but they are also making it easier for students and recent graduates to access federal jobs and internships.  

Internship Program
The Internship Program offers current students in a wide variety of educational institutions with paid opportunities to work in federal agencies and explore different career paths. It replaces the Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP) and the Student Career Experience Program (SCEP).

Upon successful completion of an internship, including 640 hours of work, participants are eligible for conversion to full-time federal employment. Agencies may waive up to 320 hours of the work experience requirement for outstanding performers.

Learn more

Recent Graduates Program
The Recent Graduates Program is a dynamic, one-year developmental program designed for individuals who have received undergraduate or graduate degrees from qualifying educational institutions or programs. Candidates must apply to the program within two years of degree or certificate completion, with the exception of veterans, who have up to six years to apply due to military service obligations.

Participants in the Recent Graduates Program receive a minimum of 40 hours of training and professional development, complete an individual development plan and are assigned a mentor. Additionally, upon successful completion of the program, they are eligible for conversion to full-time federal employment.

*Students who graduated after the executive order was issued on December 27, 2010, and before the final regulations took effect on July 10, 2012, have been granted two full years of eligibility from July 10, 2012 to apply to the Recent Graduates Program.

Learn more

Presidential Management Fellows Program
The Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program has been and continues to be a government-wide leadership development program for graduate and professional degree candidates. The Pathways Programs regulations preserve this program, while at the same time increasing its flexibility to attract talent to federal agencies. For example, under the new regulations, the school nomination requirement has been eliminated and the eligibility window has been expanded to allow individuals who received a qualifying advanced degree within the preceding two years to apply to the program.

PMFs participate in an orientation program, receive 80 hours of training and professional development, complete an individual development plan, are assigned a mentor, and have at least one rotational or developmental assignment. Upon successful completion of the program, participants are eligible for conversion to full-time federal employment.

Learn more

For more information

For more information about the Pathways Programs, including FAQs, visit the Office of Personnel Management’s webpage or the Student and Recent Graduates page on

If you have any questions about the Pathways Programs, please email

The Partnership for Public Service is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that works to revitalize our federal government by inspiring a new generation to serve and by transforming the way government works.