Sudden Discontinue?

Got this yesterday:

We appreciate the interest you have shown the National Security Agency (NSA) and the time you have invested exploring employment opportunities with us. I regret to inform you that I have been notified that your processing with NSA has been discontinued. The specific reason(s) for this has not been disclosed to me; however, it is important to understand that our employment decisions are often a result of a comprehensive evaluation of many factors. Such factors include, but are not limited to, individual qualifications, personnel security guidelines, psychological standards, test results, and prior work experience, where appropriate. In most cases, candidates can be reconsidered for employment after a year of the closeout decision. Questions regarding this decision may be addressed in writing to:

I’m not sure what went wrong?
I had just finished the poly and psych eval in August, to which I passed. I had to retake the poly the day after, but I passed the second time.
The Psych Eval person had me hunt some doctors down and have them fax papers, but I was told if they needed anything more once I had it faxed they’d call me.

Now a week later after the fax, I get that in my email.
Kinda really down about it now. I was going to write the letter to see, but trying to research this type of discontinuation, every result I find no one said what happened after they wrote the letter, they never come back to their topics and say what it was or if they found out what it was.

The doctors I had to hunt down were very … uncooperative. One guy no longer worked there so they told me to fax the medical record instead. The other place I went there 3 different times, but it was a facility of different doctors. The psych doctor that saw me was on vacation so another filled it out but did it without me there since I no longer go there or have insurance and the doctor would have to make an appointment (which was 3 month back wait) to get it filled out with them. The other doctor at that facility for mental health court no longer worked there.

Could this be the reason for the discontinuation? The lady on the phone when I told her this told me she’d run it by the Psych Doctor to see if it was enough and if it wasn’t they’d call me … They didn’t call me within the week, so the next week I did a followup call to see if they wanted more, they said if they did the recruiter would say so I emailed the recruiter, got no response. Two days later yesterday I get the discontinuation.

I’m … very lost.

This is what my timeline was like:

  • Application Submitted for Job - 7/22/2020
    -Initial Reply to Application - 11/17/2020
    -Phone Interview - 12/03/2020
    -CJO - 12/22/2020, Signed - 12/30/2020
    -eQIP Finished - 3/20/2021 (This was finished earlier, but got rejected for something I acidentally did wrong and they didn’t email me it was rejected until I got the warning that it wasn’t submitted and I was running out of time, so I got it done barely before deadline.)
    -Told by Pre-screening Financial Letter I had debts, and had to pay them or be discontinued - 3/23/2021
    –Insert 3 months of payments of debts here in payment plans to satisfy requirement not to be discontinued—
    -3 Months Payment Plan Satisfied - 6/21/2021
    -Meeting with BI - 7/7/2021
    -Psych Eval and Poly Scheduled - 8/3-8/4/2021
    -Poly actually Passed because after Psych Eval, sent home and rescheduled for ‘covid concerns’ - 8/19 - 8/20/2021
    -Papers Confirmed Faxed to Psych Eval Lady who said it was on hold until she had them. - 9/7/2021
    -Week later, now discontinued.

I kinda doubt that they were able to receive and process those faxes, review them, make any kind of decision and then respond to you within a week. So I think the decision was made without regard to the requested information that was faxed to them.

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Could there have been a timelimit on the faxes? Psych Eval lady told me it’d be on hold till I got them to her, but she never said how long I had. Applicant Psych Processing said she’d talk to the doctor, after looking me up when they got faxed, so she apparently saw me in the system still needing the faxes.

I’m wondering if if I somehow failed to provide things timely or what. There’s no rejection letter in the mail yet just the recruiter, and my status still shows security processing. I tried to ask recruiter he told me they don’t disclose anything to the recruiters for applicant privacy.

I’m just in confusion over what it could have been.

This happens all the time and you will likely never get any answers.

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Even if I write the letter it says to write?

If you don’t mind me asking, what can be done then? Like, if I don’t know, how do I know it’s worth it to apply again in a year or not.

I still have the BIs card, would he possibly know?

Probably not. They collect the info, write it up, and pass it along. If they get requests for follow-up, they follow up. The investigator may have his own opinions about any issues which were uncovered that might have had an impact, but I doubt he would share them with you as they would only be an educated guess on his part.

Don’t bother contacting the investigator. They probably won’t remember your if your last contact was over two weeks ago. The investigator rarely knows the outcome of your case unless you tell them.


You can do everything right and still not be selected. Whatever information that you sent over might not be suitable for the position that you applied for.


Sorry, can you elaborate? I thought since the interviewer gave a CJO you’re right for the position, but then have to be seen if you’re right for security or ‘stable’ ?

That’s why I’m confused to be found unsuitable so late in the process right after Psych.

Though, I do have one possible guess but I thought it wouldn’t hit me until after the clearance decision of yes or no since it was the second condition on the CJO and separate from the SC process condition.

Perhaps that might have been it?

No. You’re just right for the pool of applicants.

Discontinues happen for a lot of reasons.

A conditional job offer means the final offer of employment is based on specific requirements.

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You can go through the entire process successfully and still be discontinued. You may not be the best fit for the position. They also extend like 3-5 CJOs per open position, knowing that most people will drop or will be found unsuitable. The applicant that makes it through first will get an FJO. There have been other cases for exceptionally qualified candidates that get picked up for another position after not being selected for their first choice.

So what happens to the people when:

  1. some get through the process fully but are too late, because somebody else got there first and got the FJO. Let’s say these people are not offered some other position within the agency. Does that mean they don’t have a clearance unless somebody else somehow picks it up and brings them on?

  2. people are in the middle of processing while somebody gets to the finish line first. Do the processing stops “for the less fortunate”?

Yes and maybe to both of these. It really depends on the individual. Sometimes you make it all the way through and get the discontinued letter.
Other times you make it through to find out that the original job you applied for is no longer available and you are offered another job. Sometimes its the same job in a different location, other times it is another job you are equally qualified for.
It is a really frustrating process because there is little to know information provided and sometimes its not even your fault.

Alright, then I THINK I might know why I was discontinued, though I thought it would come up AFTER the SC process since they told me it only had to be before employment. I’ll send the letter to see if it adds up but…

I didn’t have a degree. The interviewer was impressed and told me he wanted to hire me anyway but due to requirements couldn’t and asked me when I could finish mine which I said I had about a year left but that he’d extend the CJO since the clearance process would take equally as long anyway.

When I got the CJO it had 2 conditions. 1. Approved for SC, 2. Degree before I start.
Because of financial aid wanting tax documents that I couldn’t procure in time (IRS never mailed them), I was unable to get the degree by this point.)

So I wonder if that could be it? But I thought since they said before start, I’d finish the SC process, and then be expected for it? Though, that’s all I can think of.

It could be. It would be very hard to come into any IC organization without a degree unless you were a military transfer that was already qualified for the position you were doing, or some really niche skill. Honestly the FOIA request is not going to even give you a reason, its just going to be a bunch of notes and stuff like a copy of the SF86 you already filled out. The best thing to do would be to gather those documents they requested before, complete your degree, and apply again. Sometimes it takes a couple of years but if its something you really want to do then don’t give up.


Hacker/Cyber Security Major. I had done all kinds of CTFs, interned in a SOC, and made top 100 in the NSAs own CTF back in 2015 and thus had the ‘leverage code’ they gave us to apply with when we did. Probably why he let me.

But you say the FOIA request won’t show? Someone else who got discontinued said he got back in clear writing he wasn’t forthcoming in psych. It was still confusing, but he still said they gave him the clear cut reason.

You’re saying it won’t give a reason like that?

It sounds like that other person might have received a clearance denial. Did you get denied a clearance? It can’t do any harm to request it. But I wouldn’t hold out for a clear answer. Please report back with the results.

I’m sorry to say, but I feel you did not pass psych evaluation. The people saying that there is 3-5 CJO for every open position. Yes that is probably true, but there is endless supply of money and positions if they want you they will find you a position to fill if the original position has been filled. If not they will create a req for you to fill as new positions open constantly. DOD just got nearly a trillion and we are not at war. My guess is the psych lady couldn’t complete her report until you had faxed over information. I see you left those details out. I suspect it confirmed her suspicions. Seeing a psychologist? Psychiatrist? Did the either diagnosis anything? The later give any prescription(s) for medicine? Even give a sample? Did you include this on your security form? NSA likes to pretend they hire these individuals, but reality is they work hard not to. Why take the chance? Psych lady could have diagnosed you as a psychopath in which case passing the poly is irrelevant.

Also just something that struck me… first your form was messed up, you have debts, then chasing doctors to fax things. It seems like a train wreck. Maybe they psych figured you had personality that subverts his responsibilities and this had been evident in your process. Decided to cut you loose.

Forget the NSA, much more interesting projects on the outside.

Excuse me, rude much? I didn’t leave it out I literally said I fax’d it and she told me if she’d need more. I had to hunt them because I hadn’t seen them in ages.

The first was in 2014, I am a hypochondriac, not that it’s your business (I told them and put it on the form) and had a panic attack that resulted in the hospital doing a 72 hour hold because they don’t know how to handle health anxiety, I was not committed, a hold is just to see if you need to be committed, but the doctor found there to be no issue/agreed with me that you don’t put a hypochondriac in a ward. And so it was dismissed. But again it was in 2014, and at this point the doctor no longer works there, hence it was hard to hunt it down as the place didn’t want to give me anything kept repeating “we don’t sign stuff,” So she said just get the record instead which I sent.

The second doctor was a mental health court dismissal because after my grandmother who raised me died, my anxiety that had been in control by then came back tenfold (because you know watching the most important loved one in your life deteriorate and die in front of you traumatizes you for a year at least) and I had 911 abuse and disorderly conduct (simply I called 911 too many times thinking I was dying because watching her die brought my own anxiety back) and they got sick of it and tried to arrest, then I had a argument with the hospital where I wanted a test, they wouldn’t give it so I walked out and tried to get an uber to another hospital but a security guard came up and asked me my information to which I didn’t give it to her because I didn’t want her to call ahead to a different hospital to mess up me getting the test (CT scan because I was afraid of an aneurysm), and so since I didn’t cooperate and give her my information she pulled a disorderly conduct charged.

Both charges were dismissed through mental health court (meds and a counselor for a year). However, the mental health court lady also no longer works there because it was a state ran facility and they’re in and out all the time, and my doctor I’d seen for the year was on vacation and had another lady there fill it out to get it there on time.

So yes, it was a hunt, but there’s nothing that says you can’t have hypochondria which is not that serious of an illness. But none of that was your business, hence why I left the details out. However I provided all of that to THEM.

Well sorry you felt I was rude. But this detail gives me a very good idea who you are and I’m also sorry to say you are not suitable for NSA. They are looking for robots. Someone that eats breakfast the same exact way every morning. Someone that is emotionally stable. Even just part of your experience is not expected for someone that lives 10 lifetimes. When I was going through the process years ago they told me I would need to have their approved doctors and dentist. You could be a munchausen in which case you eventually might not be satisfied with NSA approved doctors.

Also suppose one night you start calling 911 telling the recorded line everything you do. Can you imagine the mess ? That psych lady would have a hard time saying “there was no warning signs, there was nothing I missed”. Truthfully all I see are red flags.

I would request the files that was faxed. Doctors often puts notes on precisely what they were thinking. You believe everything is dandy, but the doctors might have written something not as pleasant.

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