How to be recruited by MI6
Step 1: Don’t write an article about getting recruited by MI6
Admit it, you’ve thought about it.
Having heard of the links between Cambridge and MI6, we all dreamed that one day we would get a mysterious anonymous letter inviting us to London where Judi Dench will tell us everything we need to know about saving the planet from bad guys while playing with some really nifty gadgets. But unlike most cool grad schemes, we can’t just saunter up to someone at a careers fair and start going on about our transferrable skill set, MI6 need to come to you. Thankfully the Tab, as always, is here to help you stand out from the crowd and get the attention of MI6.
Disclaimer: I have never been approached by MI6 and I never will be once this article has been published. Of course, that is exactly what someone who has been approached by MI6 would say.
Have a cool name
Whether it’s James Bond, Alex Rider or Christopher Steele, it is clear that in order to be a spy, you need to sound the part. Ideally, you want a fairly traditional first name and a surname that implies you’re either really tough or really good at sex. If you’ve been left with a slightly fluffier name that is more suited to an elderly vicar or kindly primary school teacher, it’s never too late change it to something that will catch MI6’s attention. I recommend something like William Goodshagg or Anna Sasin.
Wear a lot of black
MI6 agents need to be able to blend into the shadows in order to acquire top secret information from foreign governments, like whether or not their president has wet the bed in a sexy way. Show MI6 that you already have the skills to do this by wearing all black everything and donning your sunglasses even at midnight. It is also advisable to set your Facebook profile picture to a photo of you in the midst of your teenage emo phase, to illustrate that you’ve had a lifelong commitment to blending into the darkness.
Cultivate relevant skills
If you end up working for MI6 you’ll need to use your abilities to lie, manipulate and backstab those around you in order to achieve your mission goals. As Christopher Steele has proven, there is nowhere better to develop these skills than the Cambridge Union Society, where an abundance of pointless elections give you plenty of opportunities for some shady manoeuvres. If you want to attempt this in a less competitive setting with lower stakes, there’s always CUSU.
Be a bit foreign but not too foreign
Those who can speak a foreign language fluently and who are in possession of multiple passports are said to be at an advantage when it comes to MI6 recruitment, as they are able to more easily travel to other countries without drawing attention to themselves. However, as I found out when I first looked into MI6’s recruitment requirements, you do need to be a British national in order to join up. Best to learn how to say ‘Gosh I sure love being a British citizen, the queen is the best!’ in Russian while fanning yourself with your many passports.
Have a spotless record
MI6 require stringent background checks that go a hell of a lot farther than the standard DBS, so you better make sure that you’re able to pass them. Try not to commit any crimes or at the very least try not to get caught. Word on the street is that if you’ve been able to successfully murder someone and get away with it, you should tell them about it in the very first interview. They’ll be so impressed by your stealthy tricks and ruthlessness, they’ll give you that licence to kill on the spot!
What are you waiting for? Start frantically emailing Richard Dearlove to ask for a recommendation and prepare for your glamorous new life as an international person of mystery.
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