Washington, D.C. – On January 27, 2010, the Hellenic American Women’s Council (HAWC) in cooperation with the SAE USA Youth Network hosted “Pursuing a Career in National Security” at the Capital Hilton in Washington. The seminar’s guest speaker, Basil “Bill” Trikas, is the Principal Deputy for Human Resources at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Trikas provided an overview of the CIA’s mission, structure, and work environment. He also overviewed the types of career tracks and skills sought in recruiting agency personnel, and provided tips for job seekers interested in a CIA career.
HAWC Capital Region Director and the evening’s event organizer, Theodora Hancock, welcomed guests on behalf of the two sponsoring organizations. In addition to introducing Trikas, she provided an overview of HAWC’s mission and conveyed wishes from Theodore G. Spyropoulos, the World Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) coordinator of the USA Region.
“We have hosted U.S. and foreign government officials, politicians, ambassadors, scientists, scholars and experts in various fields. We address issues that challenge our minds and preconceptions,” said Hancock of HAWC’s activities, adding also that “HAWC’s unique mission is simple. We raise leaders!”
Spyropoulos’ written message to the audience emphasized the importance of careers in national intelligence: “America’s young adults of Hellenic heritage view work in the security field not only as an employment opportunity, but especially as a way to serve the nation and to help keep America safe and peaceful. I salute all the participants and congratulate you for considering opportunities in this nationally important field.”
During his presentation, Trikas overviewed the CIA’s mission to protect our nation and ensure the safety of our citizens by “collecting, analyzing and providing intelligence information to our leaders.”
Trikas also offered insight into the different career tracks: “We hire a little bit of everything – all ranges of careers. We also hire students out of college through to mid-career professionals,” with basic prerequisites including U.S. citizenship and passing a comprehensive medical, physical, psychological and security screening.
Trikas provided advice for graduating students as he outlined “Trikas’s Five Ps,” which includes preparation for an interview, professionalism, presence, persistence and publicity (being cognizant of your public domain information). He also emphasized the importance of foreign language knowledge as the CIA “focus[es] a lot on languages in hiring, and we pay a lot for languages and their maintenance.”
The presentation was followed by a question and answer session, and a reception sponsored by HAWC and the SAE USA Youth Network.