Who is a diplomat?
A diplomat is a person appointed by a country to conduct diplomacy with other countries or international organizations. Diplomacy has to do with the profession and all activities that entail representing a country abroad. The major function of a Diplomat is to manage international relations.
Other functions of diplomats include:
Representation and protection of the interests and nationals of a country on the global scene
Initiation and facilitation of strategic agreements
Participating in treaties and conventions
Promotion of information, trade and commerce and other friendly relations between countries.
How to be a Diplomat in Nigeria
This article provides you with information on how to become a Diplomat in Nigeria. The Diplomat profession in Nigeria is ideal for people who find that they have an interest in protecting the country or representing the interest of Nigeria when relating to other countries. There is no clear-cut in stone way to become a Diplomat in Nigeria, but there are proven ways to pursue a career as a Diplomat. Remember that being a Diplomat is one of the noblest professions in the world as you become a representative of a whole country. Note that diplomats are officially appointed by the Nigerian government as representatives even with international organizations. Read on below to find out steps to become a diplomat in Nigeria
Requirements and Qualities Expected of a Nigerian Diplomat
A career as a Nigerian diplomat is not a gender-based one, that is, it is open to both males and females. The required skill sets such as effective communication and negotiation skills can be learned and horned as one climbs the ladder in the profession.
Official Steps to Become a Diplomat in Nigeria
Take the following steps to have an edge in your quest of becoming a Nigerian diplomat:
Possessing a University Degree
Just like every other profession in Nigeria, it is important you have a university degree. This is preferable in some disciplines such as Political science, Economics, International relations, Public Administration, Sociology, Business Administration, History, or other social sciences or management science courses that give you a foundation for the sort of roles you will perform as a Diplomat. However, if you are not able to get admission for any of these courses, you still must attend a University and earn a degree to get your foot in the door. After graduation and observing the mandatory National Youth Service program, you must put your ears to the ground for openings at the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs, when you hear of any, you can then apply through the Federal Civil Service Commission. If you are lucky enough to be invited to an interview, pass and get the job, then you have become a Career Diplomat.
Attending the Foreign Service Academy
The Foreign Service Academy was established to train applicants and teach them the required skills and knowledge needed to execute their tasks excellently as Diplomats. The academy is located in Lagos state and in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Students of the academy are taught all the necessary training that covers the theoretical and practical aspects of diplomacy. As a student of the Foreign Service Academy, some of the courses you will be taught include:
The art of effective communication
The skills of usage of English language
You will learn UN-approved languages such as Arabic, French and Spanish.
Successfully Complete the Tasks at the Foreign Service Academy
Every student of the Foreign Service Academy must undergo a series of tests before they can finally be qualified Diplomats, able to represent Nigeria in other countries.
Working in the Private sector
Another route to becoming a Diplomat in Nigeria is by getting a regular job just like anyone else after your studies while becoming a part of any political party. If your Political party gets to win the election at a presidential level, you can have a chance at becoming appointed as an ambassador to any country. This option makes you a Political Diplomat.
Getting a job with the United Nations
The United Nations often puts out vacancies and job offers to work with the organizations. Ensure you watch out for these opportunities and when you finally get one, you have become a Diplomat.
Requirements and Qualities Expected of a Nigerian Diplomat
Below are the requirements and qualities necessary for becoming a Nigerian diplomat.
You must have attained the minimum required age of 21 and must not be older than 59
You must be free from any sort of criminal record
You must have a medical record
You must be very qualified for the job and have the ability to represent your country
You must possess effective negotiation skills
You must be a patriotic citizen of Nigeria
You must be honest and trustworthy in your dealings
You must be willing to travel to any part of the world
You must have a proven record of ethical uprightness
You must be free from any sort of drug and alcohol addiction record or addiction.
Being a Diplomat in Nigeria
There are many forms in which one can become a diplomat as determined by international laws. Ranks in the profession include ambassadors, envoys, ministers, and charge d’affaires. There are other subdivisions within these diplomatic ranks. One can also become a career diplomat, as opposed to political appointees with professional backgrounds who are designated officially to be diplomats. The modern ranking system follows an almost similar pattern, it includes:
- First Secretary
- Second Secretary
- Third Secretary
- Assistant Attache
As an aspiring Diplomat, you must always be on the lookout for any policy opportunities both on the national and international level. You must have the ability to recognize these opportunities and aim for them quickly. The skills needed to be successful as a Diplomat are such that can be learned in the Foreign Service Academy. A diplomat is engaged in lifelong learning as opportunities are opening and one keeps garnering experiences.