Katie Kieffer

Obama is offering high school seniors $30,000 a year for college tuition, PLUS a job, housing, transportation and a galore of other benefits. Apparently, Obama is having a hard time finding youths willing to spy on their friends, so he’s upping the ante.

NSA.Gov currently has a “job” posted for young people who are desperate for a job, thanks to Obama’s lackluster recovery. Under “Careers” and “Opportunities for You,” the NSA has this posting with a bold red alert notice at the top: “Notice: Stokes Scholarship Application Deadline extended until 30 November 2013.”

The objective of this job is ambiguous. The Obama administration should be transparent about why taxpayers are being forced to provide these “jobs” and “entitlements” to high school seniors. In the long run, will these jobs benefit young people, or will they benefit control-hungry bureaucrats? Also, what exactly will these young people be doing? The NSA website says young people will work in “computer science” and “computer or electrical engineering,” but without concrete details on the projects under those categories.

From the NSA’s website:

“Stokes is open to high school seniors planning on majoring in computer science or computer/electrical engineering. As an NSA employee with the Stokes Program, you will attend college full-time, receive up to $30,000 per year for tuition and mandatory fees; and work during the summers at NSA for 12 weeks in areas that are related to your course of study. You'll acquire real-world experience and receive a year-round salary. Please note: must maintain a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale after your freshman year, if selected as a program participant, you are required to work in your area of study for NSA after your college graduation for at least one-and-one-half times the length of study.”

Wait. That’s not all! The government has many other benefits in store for young snoopers:

· Housing and travel entitlements available during summer employment (if the distance between NSA and the school exceeds 75 miles) (You are “entitled” to housing and a taxi driver.)

· Year-round salary (Never worry about beer money again.)

· Guaranteed continued employment with NSA after graduation (Snooper for Life!)

· Receive annual and sick leave and paid federal holidays (Lovely.)

· Health and life insurance (While the rest of us see premium increases and cancelations.)

· Participation in federal retirement plans (Retirement plan? These are high school seniors!)

Seriously? This is what Obama is pushing on our young people? This is a complete joke. Young people should be encouraged to pursue careers in their field of interest that utilize their talents, not to troll Facebook, text messages and who knows what else to keep America “safe”…er, wait, not to keep them safe from underwear bombers and marathon bombers.

The comedians have been having a ball poking fun at the NSA. Last month, Jay Leno cracked that Obama should: “put the NSA in charge of the [ObamaCare] website. That way there's nothing to fill out. They already have all our information!”

High school seniors might take the NSA’s Stokes Scholarship because they want money to go to college. But, they will not be taking this scholarship because it’s their first option. Imagine the kind of harassment a young person will receive if their friends find out they work for the NSA:

High School Senior A: “Hey, do you have a job lined up for the summer?

High School Senior B: “Uh, yeah, actually, it’s kind of embarrassing… but I got a job working for the NSA.”

High School Senior A: What?! You mean you’re working for those people who snoop on our text messages? Get out of here, dude. Stay away from my iPhone, OK?”

In August, Entrepreneur Magazine pointed out that America will have a hard time retaining her spot as the “#1” place to be an entrepreneur unless she lowers her corporate income tax rate, currently the highest in the G20. With a lower corporate income tax rate, American innovators would be more incentivized to launch their start-ups here in America and create jobs for young people at places where they will actually want to work: Companies that will grow into the next Apple or Pixar; and, not places where they are only working to get paid, such as at the IRS, TSA and NSA.

If you think that your taxpayer money could be better spent in the hands of job-creators who will empower young people will real jobs—while also respecting the First Amendment—please contact the NSA to express your concerns about the Stokes Scholarship. Here is the NSA’s contact information:

NSA Recruitment & Staffing: 1-866-672-4473

NSA Public and Media Affairs: 1-301-688-6524


Katie Kieffer

Katie Kieffer is the author of a new book published by Random House, LET ME BE CLEAR: Barack Obama’s War on Millennials and One Woman’s Case for Hope.” She writes a weekly column for Townhall.com. She also runs KatieKieffer.com.