As an Interdisciplinary Scientist, you serve as an expert that supports programs that regulate agricultural pests; risks of the introduction of exotic pests; pest movement; and damage potential to ensure safe trade, protect natural resources and U.S. agriculture. If selected, you will serve within a laboratory or work unit within Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ), Science and Technology (S&T;).
*Salary Information: *
First time hires to the Federal government normally start at the lowest rate of the salary range for the grade selected.
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The duties described are for the full-performance level. At developmental grade levels, assignments will be of more limited scope, performed with less independence and limited complexity.
The duties may include, but are not limited to:
Provides qualitative and quantitative analyses for management of invasive species, diseases and other plants.
Obtains, validates, and analyzes data related to pest identification and diagnostics.
Develops methods of detection and inspection of pest and diseases.
Develops, adapts, and/or evaluate tools, methods, and technologies to mitigate effects of populations of introduced plant pests.
Designs, evaluates, and optimizes strategies for detecting incipient populations of exotic pests of plants.
Develops, adapts, and/or evaluates methods and equipment for phytosanitary treatment of commodities, packaging materials, and meas of conveyance.
Serve as an authorized representative on cooperative and interagency agreements.
Manages projects, resources and budgets.
Occasional travel - Travel for training and work assignments may be required.
Who May Apply
This job is open to…
Permanent APHIS agency employees and CTAP eligibles.
Questions? This job is open to 2 groups.
#### Job family (Series)
0401 General Natural Resources Management And Biological Sciences
Conditions of Employment
US Citizenship is required.
Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959.
Valid state driver's license is required at the time of application.
Selection and retention in this position is contingent on a successfully adjudicated FBI National Criminal History Check (fingerprint check) and a background investigation.
Successful completion of a 1 year probationary period (if new hire to the Federal service).
Work may be in remote locations or in foreign countries or in areas of quarantine or insect rearing facilities that are warm, chilled, humid, wet, noisy, and/or contain airborne insect scales or other potential allergens.
A pesticide applicators license or certification in use of SCBA may be required.
Applicants must meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements by the closing date of the announcement including time-in-grade restrictions, specialized experience as defined below, etc.
TIME IN GRADE:
Federal employees must meet time-in-grade requirements by the closing date of this announcement.
Biologist (0401) Degree
*: biological sciences, agriculture, natural resource management, chemistry, or related disciplines appropriate to the position.
Combination of education and experience: Courses equivalent to a major, as shown above, plus appropriate experience or additional education.
FOR THE GS-11 LEVEL:
Applicants must have one year of specialized experience (equivalent to the GS-09 level) that may have been obtained in the private or public (local, county, state, Federal) sectors which demonstrates:
Experience coordinating scientific investigations in response to program needs that support the development and/or evaluation of new methods, protocols, or practices used for plant pest rearing, detection, diagnosis, control, management, exclusion or eradication.
Knowledge and understanding of scientific principles of entomology, plant pathology, botany, or other related plant sciences which may include a wide range of disciplines (e.g. chemistry, ecology, microbiology, or population or molecular genetics) to develop methods to support plant pest regulatory programs.
Experience communicating technical or scientific information orally and in writing in a succinct and organized manner to industry representatives, other state/Federal government agencies and cooperators.
Experience working on committees, teams or working groups to address scientific topics that have an impact on plant health programs.
3 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. degree or Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree in biological sciences, agriculture, natural resource management, chemistry, or related disciplines.
Equivalent combinations of education and experience are qualifying for this grade level.
FOR THE GS-12 LEVEL:
Applicants must have one year of specialized experience (equivalent to the GS-11 level) that may have been obtained in the private or public (local, county, state, Federal) sectors which demonstrates:
Experience coordinating and managing scientific investigations in response to the program needs of the organization leading to development and /or evaluations of new methods, protocols, or practices used for plant pest rearing, detection, diagnosis, control, management, exclusion, or eradication.
Experience in applying the scientific principles of entomology, plant pathology, botany or other related plant sciences often incorporating a wide range of disciplines (e.g. chemistry, ecology , microbiology, and population or molecular genetics) to develop and evaluate methods to support plant pest regulatory programs.
Experience communicating technical or scientific information orally and in writing on aspects of pest management project progress to industry representatives, other state/federal government agencies and cooperators.
Experience working on committees, teams with differing subject specialties, technical work groups, or science advisory panels to address scientific topics that have an impact on large regional or multi-agency lead plant health programs, or internal agency organizational level changes that improve program delivery.
Experience in managing technical support staff in developing and applying methods for pest management.
(Note: There is no education substitution for the GS-12 grade level.)
are required if:
This position requires specific coursework or a degree in a specific field to be basically qualified.
You are qualifying for the position based on education.
You are qualifying for this position based on a combination of experience and education.
This education must have been successfully completed and obtained from an accredited school, college, or university.
COMBINATION OF EDUCATION & EXPERIENCE AT THE GS-11 GRADE LEVEL:
Applicants may have combinations of successfully completed education and specialized experience to meet total qualification requirements. The total percentages must equal at least 100 percent to qualify for that grade level. To learn more about combining education and experience for this series, click the following: Combining Education and Experience for Professional and Scientific Positions
Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.
Please see above for education qualification requirement information.
This position is subject to unscheduled overnight details of undetermined lengths in the event of animal health emergencies or other conditions requiring immediate response, as required by the Agency. (Extensive periods of time may be designated for overnight details.)
Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP): For information on how to apply as a CTAP eligible see ****To exercise selection priority for this vacancy, CTAP candidates must meet the basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors. CTAP candidates must be rated and determined to be well qualified (or above) based on an evaluation of the competencies listed in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. When assessed through a score-based category rating method, CTAP applicants must receive a rating of at least 85 out of a possible 100.
Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc) should **** (voice and TDD).
Farm Service Agency (FSA) County Employees: Permanent County employees without prior Federal tenure who are selected for a Civil Service position under Public Law 105-277 will be given a career-conditional appointment and must serve a 1-year probationary period.
Direct Deposit – Per Public Law 104-134 all Federal employees are required to have federal payments made by direct deposit to a financial institution of your choosing.
E-Verify: Federal law requires agencies to use the E-Verify system to confirm the employment eligibility of all new hires. If you are selected as a newly hired employee, the documentation you present for purposes of completing the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Form I-9 on your entry-on-duty date will be verified through the DHS E-VERIFY system. Under the system, the new hire is required to resolve any identified discrepancies as a condition of continued employment.
It is the policy of the Government not to deny employment simply because an individual has been unemployed or has had financial difficulties that have arisen through no fault of the individual. See more information at: ****Read more
How You Will Be Evaluated
You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.
You will be evaluated based on your qualifications for this position as evidenced by the experience, education, and training you described in your application package, as well as the responses to the Assessment Questionnaire to determine the degree to which you possess the knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies listed below:
Knowledge of plant protection and quarantine
Knowledge of scientific laboratory procedures, including molecular analyses
Ability to conduct basic & applied research to develop PPQ strategies, methods, and/or techniques
Ability to perform mathematical and statistical analyses
Written and oral communication and interpersonal skills
Leadership, supervisory, project management, and program management skills
Your application, including the online Assessment Questionnaire, will be reviewed to determine if you meet (a) minimum qualification requirements and (b) the resume supports the answers provided to the job-specific questions. Your resume must clearly support your responses to all the questions addressing experience and education relevant to this position. Applicants who meet the minimum qualification requirements and are determined to be among the best qualified candidates will be referred to the hiring manager for consideration. Noncompetitive candidates and applicants under some special hiring authorities need to meet minimum qualifications to be referred.
Note: If, after reviewing your resume and/or supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have inflated your qualifications and or experience, your rating may be lowered to more accurately reflect the submitted documentation. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating. Providing inaccurate information on Federal documents could be grounds for non-selection or disciplinary action up to including removal from the Federal service.
To view the application form, visit: ****Read more
Background checks and security clearance
Public Trust - Background Investigation
The following documents are required for your application to be complete. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, illegible fax transmissions, delays in mail service, your system failure or downtime, etc. Encrypted and digitally signed documents will not be accepted. Failure to submit required, legible documents may result in loss of consideration.
Resume that includes the following information: 1) personal information; 2) education; 3) work experience including the work schedule and hours worked per week as well as dates of employment; and title, series and grade if applicable; 4) supervisor's phone number for each work period listed and whether or not we may contact them for reference checks; and, 5) other qualifications.
If education is required or you are using education to qualify, you must submit a copy of your college transcripts. An unofficial copy is sufficient with the application; however, if you are selected, you will be required to submit official transcripts prior to entering on duty. Education must have been successfully obtained from an accredited school, college or university. If any education was completed at a foreign institute, you must submit with your application evidence that the education was evaluated by a credential evaluation service as being equivalent to U.S. education standards. There are private organizations that specialize in this evaluation and a fee is normally associated with this service. For a list of private organizations that evaluate education, visit ****All transcripts must be in English or include an English translation.
Other required documents as applicable:
Current Career/Career-Conditional: MUST submit a copy of an SF-50, non-award Notification of Personnel Action, which documents competitive civil service status and preferably shows your current grade/position. In order to demonstrate competitive civil service status, the position occupied block on the SF-50 should show a 1 and your tenure block should show a 1 or 2. If your current grade is not your highest permanent grade, submit a copy of an additional SF-50 showing your highest grade.
In addition, current and former Federal employees must submit their most recently completed annual performance appraisal (dated within 18 months) which identifies the official rating of record, signed by the supervisor, or a statement advising why the performance appraisal is unavailable (e.g., length of time in current position, etc.). Performance plans will not be accepted.
Certification of Expected Separation, Reduction-In-Force Separation Notice, Notice of Proposed Removal, or appropriate OPM/Agency certification; AND most recent performance evaluation; AND SF-50 demonstrating your separation or the position from which you will be separated.
If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:
Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.
A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.
Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.
How to Apply
How to Apply
Please read the entire announcement and all the instructions before you begin.
The following instructions outline our application process.
You must complete this application process and submit all required documents electronically by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on the closing date of this announcement.
We are available to assist you during business hours (normally 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Monday - Friday). Applying online is highly encouraged. If applying online poses a hardship, please contact our office during business hours well before the closing date for an alternate method. All hardship application packages with supporting documents must be submitted no later than noon on the closing date of the announcement in order to be entered into the system prior to its closing.
This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities on a case-by-case basis; contact us if you are requesting this.
Create a USAJOBS account (if you do not have one) at ****It is recommended that as part of your profile you set up automatic email notification to be informed when the status of your application changes. If you choose not to set up this automatic notification, then you will have to log into your USAJOBS account to check on the status of your application.
Create a resume with USAJOBS or upload a resume into your USAJOBS account. Customize your resume to ensure it documents duties and accomplishments you have gained that are directly related to this position in order to verify that qualifications are met. Your resume must support your responses to the online questionnaire (you may preview the online questionnaire by clicking on the link at the end of the How You Will Be Evaluated section of the job announcement).
Click Apply Online and follow the prompts to complete the Occupational Questionnaire and attach any additional documents that may be required.
You can update your application or documents anytime while the announcement is open. Log into your USAJOBS account and click on Application Status. Click on the position title, and then select Update Application” to continue.
NOTE: Verify that uploaded documents from USAJOBs transfer into the Agency's staffing system. Once in the Agency's staffing system you will have the opportunity to upload additional documents. Uploaded resumes must be less than 3MB and in one of the following document formats: GIF, JPG, JPEG, PNG, RTF, PDF, or Word (DOC or DOCX).
USDA APHIS MRPBS
250 Marquette Avenue, Suite 410
Minneapolis, MN, 55401
Learn more about this agency
If you set up your USAJOBS account to send automatic email notifications, you will receive an email acknowledging: 1) the submission of your online Occupational Questionnaire and resume was successful, 2) if you were referred to the selecting official for consideration, and 3) if you were selected or not selected. If you choose not to set up automatic email notifications, you must check your USAJOBS account for the latest status of your application. Your application may be reviewed to verify that you meet the qualifications and eligibility requirements for the position prior to issuing lists to a selecting official. If further evaluation or interviews are required, you will be contacted. We expect to make a final job offer within 40 days after the closing date of the announcement.
Multiple positions may be filled from this announcement.
Fair & Transparent
Fair & Transparent
The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.
Equal Employment Opportunity Policy
The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.
Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) for federal employees & job applicants
Reasonable Accommodation Policy
Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.
A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.
Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:
An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.
You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.
Learn more about disability employment and reasonable accommodations or how to contact an agency.
Legal and regulatory guidance
Social security number request
Signature and false statements
New employee probationary period
This job originated on ****For the full announcement and to apply, visit ****Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at ****will be considered.
Open & closing dates:
08/09/2018 to 08/15/2018
$66,253 to $103,234 per year
Pay scale & grade:
GS 11 - 12