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FBI Agent

Earnings Potential

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, FBI supervisory, management, and executive positions pay a base salary of about $67,765 or $79,710 a year, and $84,706 or $99,637 per year.

Facts at a glance

  • One of the priorities of the FBI is to protect the United States from terrorist’s attack, espionage, cyber-based attacks, protect civil rights, and combat major white-collar crimes.
  • The FBI was established in 1908, by Stanley Finch and was originally named the Bureau of Investigation.
  • FBI agents gather evidence, interview witnesses, investigate a variety of crimes.
  • FBI agent receives yearly salary increases.

Summary of what this career entails

This is not a regular 9-5 job, most agents work 10 hour days and work more than 50 hours a week; 8-5 is the normal schedule with 2 extra hours of overtime, everyday.  Most FBI agents usually learn and become fluent in foreign languages because it becomes beneficial in their career. This career can also be very dangerous if agents are not careful or are careless. That is why it is important for individuals to pass State examinations, color blind tests, vision tests, and psychology evaluations. To be considered for appointment as an FBI agent, an applicant must be a graduate of an accredited law school or a college graduate with one of the following: a major in accounting, electrical engineering, or information technology; fluency in a foreign language; or three years of related full-time work experience. All new agents undergo 18 weeks of training at the FBI Academy on the U.S. Marine Corps base in Quantico, Virginia.

Examples and or details of work

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents are the Government’s principal investigators, responsible for investigating violations of more than 200 categories of Federal law and conducting sensitive national security investigations. Agents may conduct surveillance, monitor court-authorized wiretaps, examine business records, investigate white-collar crime, or participate in sensitive undercover assignments. The FBI investigates organized crime, public corruption, financial crime, fraud against the Government, bribery, copyright infringement, civil rights violations, bank robbery, extortion, kidnapping, air piracy, terrorism, espionage, interstate criminal activity, drug trafficking, and other violations of Federal statutes.

Degrees that lead to this career

Some of the careers degrees available for individuals include:

  • B.S. in Language
  • B.S. in Criminal Law
  • B.S. in Law
  • B.S. in Accounting

Specific Career openings in this field

Some of the positions possibly available for individuals that want a career as an FBI agent include Special agent and/or CIA agent.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2006-07 Edition, Police and Detectives, on the Internet at