Pros: work towards a good cause
Cons: pay rates, budgets tied to federal budgets.
The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) manages the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and focuses on research and training in atmospheric and Earth system sciences. The organization has a very academic environment, with a loosely federated, functional structure. The pay tends to lag behind the private sector, but offers good benefits such as educational assistance, retirement plan, child care, etc.