Criminal Justice Alum Tony Fetter finds his place at the Government Accountability Office

Tony Fetter found himself in an unusual predicament.

After working in law enforcement for years, he had moved to Germany with his wife for her career. He had graduated with a bachelor’s from IU in 2007, and a master’s from the University of Colorado Denver in 2010. But now that he lived in Germany, he was struggling to find work. He applied for and was offered a well-paid internship with the Government Accountability Office.

However, there was a catch. The GAO is in Washington, D.C. — about 4,000 miles away from his home in Germany. Add in the fact that he was currently enrolled in an in-person MBA program in Germany and you can see he had a decision to make.

What did he do? Like any College of Arts + Sciences student, he thought critically, stayed flexible, and adapted to his situation.

“During this time, my family was still in Germany and I was still taking in-person MBA classes in Germany.  Once a month I would have to fly back to Germany for all-day classes on Saturday and Sunday in Bavaria while still working full-time in Washington,” Tony said in an email. “I would work four ten-hour shifts the week before and the week after my classes to still get my internship hours in.”

Today, Tony still works at the GAO, but now he is a budget analyst and loves what he does.

“My day-to-day work at the GAO consist of working with a lot of spreadsheets.  I manage the budgets of my assigned mission teams within the GAO.  I do requisitions, obligations, de-obligations, moving of funds, and other duties,” he said.

“One of the more interesting parts of working in budget for the GAO is that I do get to spend some time on Capitol Hill with the Congress.  I get to be involved in the formulation of the yearly budget and get to go to the budget hearings at the Capital.”

Does this type of work sound interesting to you?
Tony has some great advice for getting a job in the United States federal government.

“Anyone wanting to work in the federal government is to apply to as many positions that you qualify for,” he said. “There are a lot of open positions around the world.”

“My wife and I are both government employees and we have worked in Colorado, Florida, Germany, and Washington, DC as federal government employees.  The federal hiring process is long, slow, and complex.  If you know someone in the federal system, reach out for some helpful hints on the process.”

Specifically interested in opportunities with the GAO? Find positions they currently have available:

Student Volunteer Intern with GAO (completely remote)

GAO Positions in USAJobs

Use the Walter Center Success Network
If you don’t know anyone working in the federal government, that’s ok. We know some people.

Log into the Walter Center Success Network (set up your profile if you haven’t already), and search for people who work in the federal system. These are College of Arts + Sciences alumni who would love to connect with you and answer any questions you may have.

You can even find Tony Fetter on the Walter Center Success Network. He would especially love to connect with veterans and ROTC members to share about his experience at the GAO and the opportunities available.

By Will Reed
Will Reed Senior Associate Director, Employer Relations Will Reed