Assistant Secretary Gentry Smith Travels to North Carolina in Push to Recruit More Diversity within Diplomatic Security Ranks


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Assistant Secretary of State for Diplomatic Security Gentry Smith will travel to Raleigh and Greensboro, September 19-22, 2022, visiting North Carolina State University and North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (N.C. A&T). His focus is to raise student awareness of career opportunities with the Diplomatic Security Service (DSS).

At N.C State, his alma mater, he will be the guest speaker at several classes, as well as attend and recruit at the Diversity and Networking Night and the Engineering Career Fair, September 19-20. At N.C. A&T, he is the featured guest for the second “Extraordinary Global Experiences Series” on September 21-22, during which he will meet with faculty and staff, recruit students across departments, and speak in a keynote lecture for NCAT Extraordinary Opportunities and the University Honors Program.

During both visits, he will speak about opportunities both domestically and abroad with DSS, the law enforcement and security arm of the U.S. Department of State.

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“Both universities represent the diversity we seek among their students,” said Assistant Secretary Smith. “N.C. A&T is not only the largest HBCU in the nation, it is also nationally recognized for its excellence in STEM education.”

“I received an excellent education at N.C. State and recognize that its doors are open to everyone as a land-grant, public university—ensuring a diverse group of students and career options.”

Smith noted that DSS is recruiting for Foreign Service careers as special agents, security engineering officers, security technical specialists, and diplomatic couriers, as well as for Civil Service and contracting positions.

“Universities like N.C. State and N.C. A&T are an important focus for DSS recruitment. They are generally representative of the diversity that we seek and are highly regarded,” said Smith. “They also reflect the diversity of the American people, which is the type of workforce we seek.”

The assistant secretary, from Weldon, N.C., began his career as a Raleigh police officer, then joined DSS as a special agent in 1987, rising through the ranks over the next three decades. In 2014, he was named director of the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Foreign Missions where he held the rank of ambassador. He retired in February 2017. He was asked to return to DSS by the Biden Administration and was sworn in as assistant secretary on August 12, 2021.

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DSS is the U.S. Department of State’s law enforcement and security arm. DSS special agents, engineers, and other security professionals are responsible for the security of more than 270 diplomatic posts around the world. In the United States, DSS personnel protect the U.S. Secretary of State and high-ranking foreign dignitaries and officials visiting the United States, investigate transnational crimes, and conduct personnel security investigations. For additional information about DSS, visit www.state.gov/m/ds or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn @StateDeptDSS.



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