University of Hartford Partners with U.S. Secret Service; Serves as Recruitment Hub

Kent McCarthy ’96, University of Hartford alumnus and Secret Service agent
Kent McCarthy ’96, University of Hartford alumnus and Secret Service agent

On Feb. 26-29, applicants will be able to apply to be a U.S. Secret Service Special Agent or Uniformed Division officer during a hiring event at the University of Hartford. 

The University of Hartford has recently partnered with the United States Secret Service to participate in the Special Agent Talent and Achievement Recruitment Program, also known as the STAR Program, and the Secret Service Police Engagement and Recruitment Program, also known as the SPEAR Program.  

The event will take place from Feb. 26 – Feb 29 on the University’s campus and is open to students throughout Connecticut as well as the public. Applicants will have the ability to take part in the Applicant Physical Abilities Fitness Test, the written examination, and professional interview, and security interview all within a few days.  

“Thank you to the University of Hartford for being such an excellent partner and hosting this event,” said Patrick J. Freaney, Special Agent in Charge of the Secret Service’s New York Field Office. “This is not only an outstanding opportunity for anyone looking for an interesting and rewarding career, but the chance to start the hiring process. I look forward to meeting the future agents and officers of the Secret Service.” 

Kent McCarthy, ’96, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of administration and recruitment at the Secret Service’s New York Field Office and a University of Hartford alumni, is leading the event.  
“We will do a portion of the hiring process right here on campus,” McCarthy said. “Typically, the testing and interview phase takes close to two months, but with this event, it’ll take about a week.”  

As part of the STAR Program, college seniors must have at least a 3.0 grade point average and can apply are eligible to apply to be a special agent as early as January 1 of their senior year. Those interested in becoming a Uniformed Division officer must be at least 20 years of age and possess a high school diploma or equivalent. All applicants should be in excellent physical shape, have good credit, and be able to pass a polygraph test. See additional information about policies, requirements, and applying. 

“Our goal is that the applicants will make it through the steps prior to graduation – those selected will receive an offer from us and go through the training class, which could start as early as June,” McCarthy said.  

The University of Hartford is one of a select few locations in the tri-state region (Connecticut, New Jersey, New York) to offer these expedited hiring events. 

“I’m thrilled that the University of Hartford is partnering with the United States Secret Service on this initiative,” said Criminal Justice Program Director and Associate Professor Kelly McGeever. “The program will streamline the application process for criminal justice majors and other qualified students interested in pursuing a rewarding career in federal law enforcement. This collaboration is a testament to our commitment to helping students secure employment after graduation.” 

For questions about this program, please e-mail: or

This program was also featured on CT Insider, NBC Connecticut, and WTHN.

We have a partnership with the University so that we will actually do the hiring process right here on campus.

Kent McCarthy ’96, Secret Service

For Media Inquiries

Molly Polk