It’s no secret that nepotism is alive and well within U.S. Culture. Everywhere you look, you can find movie stars and musicians bringing their kids into the industry without a second glance. Why can it not be the same for others who are in coveted positions within our defense industry?

It is easy to see that branch be extended with those sitting in appointed government seats, but it’s not often those favors trickle over to contractors within the Defense Industrial Base (DIB). While it might not be known to the masses, we all know on the inside that we have referral links and leaning on the industry age old practice of who you know.”

3 Ways To Help Your Kids Get Into the Defense Industry

How can you prepare your teenagers and early college go-ers into a good spot to enter into national security? Here are three ways you can help them “get ahead” using your insider knowledge and connections.

  1. Summer internships within your organization is a great way for your student to get their first taste of corporate America. Allow your student to put in the work to find an internship (because we aren’t going to do ALL the work), and then go ahead and email the hiring manager on their behalf. It is perfectly acceptable (coming from a hiring manager) to send us an email letting us know your kid has applied. We WANT to keep it in the family – that breeds loyalty.
  2. Informational interviews are a fantastic way to help connect your kid to someone within your organization – or with someone else in your network. Ask colleagues within different sectors and branch out to sister organizations. It is so much easier when you have the same email address to ping and ask for a small favor. You might be hesitant to do it, but from firsthand experience, it’s a welcomed request. I have had the opportunity to speak to a few nepo-kids and helped them land positions within the company. We all know the importance of giving back. Don’t be shy to ask for that favor. You’ve earned it with your time and dedication to the company.
  3. Start discussing social media awareness with your teenagers. If they have plans to follow your footsteps, it likely means a security clearance in their near future. Cut out the red flags with posts that deem to be questionable. We know (especially with certain 3 letter agencies) the smaller the internet presence, the better. Its always an attractive quality in a candidate when social media isn’t a concern.

Likely, if you have a security clearance, it means the vetting process has happened throughout your family and immediate family members- hence why you put their information into your SF-86. According to numbers released fall 2023, we are seeing an average of 100 days for a Secret clearance and 170 days for a Top Secret clearance. While your security clearance and status will never directly affect the investigation process, we all know that already being in “the system” can help speed things along. This is most obvious when it comes to investigating the last 10 years of living, etc etc.


Related News

NJ has over 10 years inside the DoD working for various organizations and cleared defense contractors. With an ear to the ground on all things OPSEC, cyber, machine learning & mental health, she is an untapped keg of open source information.