The Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) South Carolina district office is headquartered in the Midlands region in Columbia, the state’s capital and largest city. Since the region is at approximately the half-way point between the mountains and the beach areas, it is a central base for DEA operations throughout the state.
Columbia DEA Careers: How to Become a DEA Agent in Columbia, S.C.
Hiring for DEA Special Agent positions in Columbia, South Carolina are handled through the DEA Atlanta Division office. The DEA posts notices of upcoming orientation sessions and career fairs on the Atlanta Division Recruitment website.
Before submitting an application, potential applicants are advised to take the online “Eligibility Quiz” and answer a few questions to determine if minimum qualifications will be met.
Strong emphasis in the hiring process is placed upon evaluating the applicant’s education credentials. Candidates must meet one of the following
- Bachelor’s degree with a grade-point average of 2.95 or higher or a Master’s degree
- Bachelor of Law (LL.B.) or Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree
- Professional experience in telecommunications, electrical engineering, telecommunications, mechanical engineering or nautical engineering, accounting and auditing, along with a bachelor’s degree (proficiency in languages such as Spanish, Farsi, Chinese, Mandarin, Russian, Arabic, Nigerian dialects and other languages also counts)
- Several years of law enforcement experience (no degree requirement)
Be advised that the hiring process can take up to one year.
The Job of A DEA Agent in Columbia, S.C.
Agents with the United States Drug Enforcement Administration in Columbia have been instrumental in breaking up drug tracking rings in South Carolina, many of which originate in other areas and countries.
For example, a local TV station reported that a cocaine and marijuana trafficking ring that originated in Mexico was responsible for moving an estimated more than 8,000 pounds of marijuana, worth millions of dollars, along with cocaine, through South Carolina. DEA agents conducted surveillance that involved several warehouses that were being used as a delivery point and “stash house“ for the drugs, a tractor trailer that delivered the drugs, along with residences of the ring leaders.
Heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine and crack are among drugs that DEA agents in Columbia investigate. One dealer was intercepted for cocaine distribution when agents obtained a federal wiretap. Another investigation resulted in a conviction for illegally distributing prescription drugs, such as Oxycontin, Tylox, and Dilaudid through undercover purchases and interviews with witnesses.