A: If you do get your clearance, then, congratulations! Now you are able to keep your job, maintain your access to classified information, and continue your work as a software QA/test engineer on the mission critical project you've been working on at XYZ, in support of the government.
Q: Is my clearance going to be a permanent one?
A: Yes and no. Yes, your clearance is going to be active, either if you continue to work for XYZ, or if you leave XYZ but able to find another employer that is eligible to hold your clearance, offers you a job, and you start working there within two years of leaving XYZ. But, no, clearances are not meant to be permanent; the government can and will reinvestigate you perodically. With or without investigation, they can also send you a "letter of intent to revoke a clearance" at any time.
Q: What if I cannot find an eligible employer?
A: If you cannot find an eligible employer in two years, then you will lose your clearance. If you ever need a clearance again, then you will have to re-apply, and you'll be re-investigated. Re-investigations occur every five years, anyways, if, for example, you hold a top secret clearance.
Q: Why should I apply for clearance?
A: Most of us, software QA/test engineers, don't work for money alone. If we apply, we apply because we respect, love, or trust the government; or because we want to help the government, or because we're attracted to the vision, ideals, and engineering challenges of the job.
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