Pathways Final Rule

Final Pathways Program Rule


The Office of Personnel Management published the Final Pathways Program Rule in the Federal Register on May 10, 2012, after a draft version went through a lengthy public comment period. The final version incorporated numerous detailed comments made in response to the proposed draft rule.


The Final Pathways Program Rule takes effect on July 10, 2012, although federal agencies have been given a six-month transition period to convert students serving under the Student Educational Employment Program to the Internship Program, and to transition current Fellows to the newly modified Presidential Management Fellows Program.


Appointments may be made under the new Recent Graduates Program after federal agencies have completed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Office of Personnel Management.


NOTE: To implement the rule, OPM issued proposed regulations for parts 213, 302, 315, 330, 334, 362, 531, 536, 537, 550, 575, and 890 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations (5 CFR) on August 5, 2011.


The appointing authorities for each Pathways Program are contained in Schedule D of the excepted service, a new schedule created by section 7 of Executive Order 13562. The President created this new schedule pursuant to his statutory authority to make necessary exceptions to the competitive hiring rules when warranted by conditions of good administration. His findings to support the exception are set forth in section 1 of the Executive Order. Under the new Schedule D authority, agencies will be able, under OPM's guidance, direction, and oversight, to use excepted service hiring to fill positions from among a particular class of eligible individuals -- students and recent graduates. This approach is consistent with long-standing civil service practice under excepted service hiring authorities, including, for example, Schedule A hiring for people with disabilities.


Part 362 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) contains the regulatory requirements for each Pathways Program. Part 362 consists of four subparts. Subpart A contains only those requirements common to all Pathways Programs. Program-specific requirements are set forth in subpart B for the Internship Program, subpart C for
the Recent Graduates Program, and subpart D for the PMF Program.


Complete text for the Final Pathways Program Rule.