DIA Initiative Gives Job Experience

Soldier at desk.

The Operation Warfighter (OWF) Initiative is a Federal internship program established by the Department of Defense (DoD) in 2006. The initiative calls on Federal agencies to identify temporary assignments and opportunities for servicemembers convalescing at military medical centers in the National Capital Region (NCR).

The goal of the initiative is to match servicemembers with opportunities that utilize both their military and non-military skills, thereby creating productive assignments that are beneficial to both the servicemember and the employer. Servicemembers on medical hold, even if assigned to the National Guard and/or a Reserve Component unit, are eligible to participate in the program. The initiative represents an opportunity to facilitate recovering servicemembers' development and employment readiness by providing assistance with resume building, exploring employment interests and developing job skills through internship opportunities.

In order to participate, recovering servicemembers must obtain "medical and command approval" from their Recovery Team and Chain of Command. OWF Regional Coordinators then assist recovering servicemembers in identifying an internship opportunity based on their interests and capabilities. Duty schedules for OWF participants are dependent on each individual treatment schedule. These are flexible so as not to interfere with the servicemember's medical treatment or adversely affect their well-being and recuperation. The average length of the temporary assignment is 3-5 months for an average of 20 hours per week. DIA does not pay a servicemember's salary, as they are paid by their respective service.

OWF participants are placed in host offices and assigned a supervisor and a mentor. Based on the participant's interests and the needs of the host office, servicemembers may take training to further enhance their skills and to learn new skills. OWF strives to demonstrate to participants that skills obtained in the military are transferable into civilian employment. For recovering servicemembers returning to duty, the program enables these participants to maintain active skill sets and provides the opportunity for additional training and experience that can subsequently benefit the military.

In support of this Federal internship program for recovering servicemembers, DIA sponsors the Wounded Warrior (WW) program. For more information on this Agency program and how to apply, please click here. There is no promise of employment at the completion of an OWF/WW assignment. However, OWF servicemembers released from medical hold status, pending separation from military service, are considered potential candidates for full time employment with DIA.



  • U.S. citizenship of the OWF participant and all members of the immediate family. (All applicants conditionally selected for temporary assignments are required to satisfactorily complete a security background investigation, counterintelligence (CI) scope polygraph examination and drug screening.) Security clearances are not granted to participants who are dual citizens or who possess dual citizenship of the US, etc.
  • All OWF participants must satisfy DIA's conditions of employment before a final offer is extended.
  • OWF participants must be granted TS/SCI security clearances before a final offer is extended.

DIA is an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered without regard to non-merit factors, such as race, national orgin, color, religion, gender, age, marital status, disability or sexual orientation.


  • Send a resume and a brief description of the type of temporary assignment you are seeking to Torland Wingfield, DIA Wounded Warrior Program Manager at (703) 907-1915, torland.wingfield@dodiis.mil or Mona Benbow, Chief, Recruitment and Student Programs, at (703) 907-0472 or mona.benbow@dodiis.mil
  • For additional information about DIA, please visit the DIA website at http://www.dia.mil.


Q. Once I have been selected for a temporary OWF assignment, what is the next step?

A. The next step in the process is for your selecting manager to escort you to our military personnel office to start processing your appointment. You will be asked to complete pre-employment documents which include the SF-86 questionnaire for the security background investigation. (Duty uniforms should be worn to the inprocessing session.)

Q. How long will it take to get a security clearance?

A. The length of the security clearance process depends on your particular background. In general, if you have significant foreign travel, and/or foreign relatives or contacts, the security clearance process can be rather lengthy.

Q. What is the length of the temporary assignment?

A. The average length of assignments will vary depending on the servicemember's situation. The average length of assignments is 3 months for up to 20 hours per week.

Q. What is the role of my mentor?

A. Your mentor has volunteered to assist you with in-processing logistics and throughout your assignment. Your mentor is available to orient you to your specific office and the Agency, provide guidance on how to perform your specific work duties and generally be available to answer questions you may have.

Q. Does DIA make offers of permanent employment at the conclusion of the assignment?

A. There is no promise of employment at the completion of an OWF assignment. However, OWF servicemembers who are released from medical hold status, pending separation from military service are considered potential candidates for full time employment with DIA.

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