For more details on security clearance and job listings, visit Military.com’s Security Clearance section.
I have a Top Secret security clearance but have no desire to work in a job where that is a requirement. Should I put it on my resume? If so, why and how?
Robert V., OSCS, Norfolk, VA
Robert — First, thank you for your service.
Second, yes, the TS clearance matters regardless of whether or not you want to make it a part of your next career. Having that clearance means that you are completely trustworthy and dependable. A lot of time and money was spent on the background check required to get that clearance. You came out of that smelling like a rose! The fact that you were deemed worthy of the TS clearance is in and of itself an accomplishment and deserves a bullet on your resume. However, be careful how you phrase that bullet. If you wanted to use the TS in your next job, then simply listing it would be good enough since the companies in that category need no explanation. But since you appear to be targeting companies that do not know what it means, then you need to sell it not for what it is, but rather for what it means.
Something like this might do it:
- Recognized for trustworthiness, reliability, and integrity as evidenced by the awarding of a Department of Defense Top Secret security clearance based upon a thorough background investigation.
Good hunting and best of success in your new career!
Author, Columnist, Career Coach, Veteran
If you have questions, general or specific, about getting started in a civilian career, email them to Tom at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll feature his answers in this blog.
Tom Wolfe is an author, columnist, career coach, veteran, and an expert in the field of military-to-civilian career transition. During his career he assisted thousands of service members in their searches for employment, placing more than 3000 in their new jobs. Prior to civilian life, he graduated from the U. S. Naval Academy and served as a surface warfare officer. He teaches transition courses, gives seminars on career and job change, writes about the career transition process, and continues to counsel current and former military personnel. His book, Out of Uniform: Your Guide to a Successful Military-to-Civilian Career Transition, was published by Potomac Books in 2011.