How To Become A Border Patrol Agent

Border patrol agents have an important responsibility to protect America's borders. They have the challenging task of identifying proper documentation to allow people to enter the US, and they have to deny entry of undocumented immigrants and people who wish to enter illegally. They may watch the border from a hidden area, make use of electronic sensor television systems, track physical evidence, and make arrests. In addition, they are also involved in inspecting farms and ranches, observing traffic, and patrolling urban areas.

How to Become a Border Patrol Agent

Qualifications For Border Patrol Agent

In order to be a patrol agent, a college degree is not necessary for entry level positions, but it could be quite helpful to be considered for higher level positions. Border patrol agents may go for an associate's or a bachelor's degree in criminal justice or criminology. The knowledge acquired by a relevant college degree could help them achieve growth and perform better in higher level positions.

Other Requirements
There are some other important requirements to be eligible for the border patrol agent position. You need to have a valid driver's license, as well as a firearms license. In order to acquire experience, you must complete the training at the Border Patrol Basic Academy. The subjects in the training include immigration laws, marksmanship, Spanish, and physical training. In addition, you need to be a US citizen for at least three years and your age should be under forty, unless you are a qualified veteran. You will also need to go through a background investigation, a polygraph test, and drug tests to qualify for a border patrol agent position. You are also required to pass an oral board interview.

There are certain essential skills and personal qualities required by border patrol agents to thrive in their career:

  • Physical fitness
  • Ability to speak fluent Spanish
  • Ability to work on many tasks at the same time
  • Empathy and interpersonal skills
  • Communication and leadership skills
  • Ability to use intelligence and surveillance equipment
  • Skill to use firearms appropriately

Border Patrol Agent Job Description

Major Responsibilities
Border patrol agents take part in the following activities:

  • Linewatch and signcutting operations near borders
  • Covert surveillance using electronic sensors
  • Horse and bike patrol of boundaries that cannot be accessed by standard vehicles
  • Traffic checks to identify illegal entries and smuggling of illegal goods
  • Checks inside public transportation such as buses, aircrafts, passenger, and freight trains
  • Marine patrols on US coastal waterways

Working Conditions
Border patrol agents need to be mentally and physically tough in order to perform well in the challenging working conditions. They should be willing to go through random drug testing and work overtime in difficult circumstances. They can expect to find themselves in life threatening situations, where they may have to chase illegal aliens. They also have to face various criminals such as drug smugglers and gang members. There are always dangers for border patrol agents while in the field, but satisfaction lies in the fact that they are contributing to a good cause and protecting the borders of the US.


Q:What are the border patrol requirements?

A:If you want to become a border patrol agent, there are certain requirements you'll have to fulfill. You should be a US citizen, at least 21 years of age, hold a valid driver's license, and meet the physical fitness criteria. It'll be a good idea to earn a college degree in a discipline such as criminal justice. Moreover, you'll also have to undergo formal training at the border patrol academy.

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