Government jobs have a reputation, often well-deserved, for being bureaucratic and boring. Of course, that isn’t always the case. A quick search of the jobs database run by the United States Office of Personnel Management shows that there are loads of federal jobs – and well-paying ones, at that – that involve much more than paper-pushing.
Sure, there are plenty of traditional accounting and information technology positions posted, and lots of opportunities with less-than-sexy titles like "contract negotiator," "budget analyst" and "human resources specialist." Yet in many cases, the jobs are more exciting than the dull, inscrutable language used to describe them. In other cases – like the widely circulated posting for "astronaut candidates" – the titles might be all you need to know before you start filling out an application in hopes of living out your childhood dreams.
Some of these jobs you’ve seen in television shows and movies. We can't say that all of the positions featured here will bring the intrigue, drama and witty banter that come with being an "NCIS" agent or working in "The West Wing." Yet most of these job descriptions contrast sharply with the most common perception of government work – and they bring salaries approaching or in the six-figure range. As an added plus, most are still posted right now at USAJOBS.gov.
Click here to see nine surprisingly cool government jobs.