Department Of Agriculture - Manhattan, KS

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Find Solutions to Agricultural Problems that Affect Americans Every Day, From Field to Table

Who May Apply: All U.S. Citizens AND those eligible for consideration under a noncompetitive hiring authority (i.e., 30% or More Disabled Veteran, VRA, Schedule A, Interchange Agreement, etc.).

This position is for a Microbiologist located in Manhattan, KS. The incumbent of the position will perform a variety of laboratory, field, and research functions as it relates to microbiology, molecular biology, chemistry, and physics.

This is a TERM position lasting for a period of 13 months with possible extension of up to 4 years.

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.


Must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this position

Suitable for Federal employment, determined by a background investigation

Males born after 12/31/59 must be registered with Selective Service

TERM position of 13 months, with possible extension to 4 years

Travel may be required (up to 5 nights/month)

Clearance required for select agents

The incumbent of the position will perform duties such as:
Planning and implementing experiments and protocols involving molecular biology.

Developing new methods for the collection and analysis of infectious disease experimental data.

Maintaining official laboratory recordings in order to document observations and results obtained.

Analyzing results of microbiological data in order to draw conclusions or generate plausible interpretations.

Utilizing complex laboratory equipment to gather observable, empirical and measurable evidence.

Investigating applicable methodologies to carry out experimentations that align with project scope and goals.

Reviewing pertinent scientific literature to select methods and procedures most appropriate for research objectives, making adjustments as needed.

Preparing results of findings from experiments conducted, including initial interpretation of significance to the overall project.

To qualify for this position at the GS-11 level, you must meet BOTH the Basic Requirement AND the Specialized Experience , as outlined below:


Education : You must possess a Bachelor's or higher degree in microbiology; or biology, chemistry, or basic medical science that included at least 20 semester hours in microbiology and other subjects related to the study of microorganisms, and 20 semester hours in the physical and mathematical sciences combining course work in organic chemistry or biochemistry, physics, and college algebra, or their equivalent. Note: You must include a copy of your transcripts for verification .


Combination : You must possess a combination of education and experience. This includes courses equivalent to a major in microbiology, biology, chemistry, or basic medical science that included courses as shown above, plus appropriate experience or additional education. Note: You must include a copy of your transcripts for verification.


Experience: You must possess one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-09 level in the Federal service that included performing duties such as:

Following protocols and methodologies to plan and conduct microbiological research and experimentation;

Operating a variety of laboratory and field equipment to perform moderately complex microbiological data gathering techniques;

Analyzing results of microbiological data in order to draw conclusions or generate plausible interpretations; and

Documenting and summarizing experimental outcomes of completed projects in preparation for scientific journal submission.


Education : You must possess a PhD or equivalent doctoral degree in microbiology, or specific area of study such as bacteriology, virology, mycology, algology, protozoology, parasitology, immunology, serology, microbial genetics, or soil microbiology; or specific applied fields of microbiology such as clinical and public health microbiology, food technology, production processes, industrial fermentation, pollution, etc. (Graduate study in related fields such as experimental pathology, infectious diseases, epidemiology, biochemistry, animal or plant physiology, genetics, plant pathology, and insect disease control, may also be pertinent, provided it has direct application to microbiological work). Note: You must include a copy of your transcripts for verification.


Combination: You must possess a combination of specialized experience as described above and education described above that, when combined, equals 100% of the total requirement. (Please note that only graduate education in excess of the first two years may be used in this calculation). Note: You must include a copy of your transcripts for verification.

All qualification requirements must be met by the closing date of this vacancy announcement.

Applicants must be available to report for duty at the time a selection is made. Selections are typically made within 30 days of the closing date of the announcement.

This position is open to all US Citizens and Nationals, and Noncompetitive and Special Hiring Authority eligibles. You may apply under open-competitive, and noncompetitive procedures, however; you must meet the requirements for one of the following categories to apply as a noncompetitive eligible.

1. A current permanent competitive service employee; former Federal employee who achieved career status in the competitive service; or former Federal employee who served on a career conditional appointment without achieving career status in the competitive service who was separated less than three years ago. This includes applicants who have previously held, or currently hold this position and grade with the same promotion potential as announced for this announcement. You must submit the SF-50 that shows competitive service eligibility to be considered.

2. A Veteran applying for a Veterans' Recruitment Appointment (VRA), must submit a copy of your DD-214 showing an honorable discharge to be considered. Eligibility for VRA appointments includes Disabled veterans; Veterans who served on active duty in the Armed Forces during a war declared by Congress, or in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge has been authorized; Veterans who, while serving on active duty in the Armed Forces, participated in a military operation for which the Armed Forces Service Medal was awarded; and Veterans separated from active duty within the past 3 years. Disabled veterans must provide the SF-15 and supporting documentation from the VA along with DD-214. NOTE: VRA only applies to positions at the GS-11 level and below.

3. A 30% or more Disabled Veteran. You must submit your DD214, a completed SF-15, and letter from the VA dated 1991 or later as proof to be considered.

4. A military spouse. Military spouses are eligible if their active duty military spouse: 1) receives a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) move; 2) has a 100% disability rating; or 3) died while on active duty. Please submit supporting documentation as proof to be considered.

5. A Severely Physically Handicapped Schedule 'A' Appointment. Please submit documentation from a State or Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Service as proof to be considered.

6. A Former Peace Corps or VISTA Volunteers Appointment. Please submit documentation as proof to be considered.

7. Interchange Agreements and Miscellaneous Authorities. Please submit documentation as proof to be considered.

Your application will be evaluated and rated under Category Rating Procedures. Qualified candidates will be placed for selection consideration into three categories: Best Qualified, Well Qualified or Qualified. Within these categories, applicants eligible for veterans' preference will receive selection priority over non-veterans. Your resume will be reviewed and compared against your responses to the online questionnaire. We strongly encourage you to answer every question that accompanies this vacancy, as your responses will better highlight your specific qualifications.

Your qualifications will be evaluated on the following competencies:

Knowledge of microbiological and chemical principles, theories, research, and practices
Ability to observe microbiological methodologies and practices and interpret their implications
Skill in calibrating and operating microbiological and chemical laboratory equipment
Ability to initiate experimental design and execute project objectives
Ability to obtain, statistically analyze, and summarize research data

Please note that your resume must thoroughly support your responses to the assessment questionnaire. High self-assessment in the applicant questions that is not supported by information in your resume may eliminate you from best-qualified status and subsequent referral to the selecting official.

Displaced/Surplus Employees: Individuals eligible under the USDA Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP) or the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) must be well qualified for the position to receive consideration for special priority selection. CTAP and ICTAP eligibles within the local commuting area will be considered well qualified if the applicant meets the basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors, and is rated in the Well Qualified Category as described in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. Employees seeking CTAP/ICTAP eligibility must submit a copy of the agency notice, a copy of their most recent performance rating and a copy of their most recent SF-50 noting current position, grade level and duty location. Please annotate your application to reflect that you are applying as a CTAP or ICTAP eligible. CLICK HERE for additional information on CTAP and ICTAP.

The Federal government offers a number of exceptional benefits to its employees. The following link provides an overview of the benefits currently offered to Federal employees: http://www.usajobs.gov/ResourceCenter/Index/Interactive/Benefits#icc .

Financial Disclosure Requirement:
The Research, Education and Economics (REE) agencies inspire public confidence in our missions by maintaining high ethical principles. Employees are subject to Federal government-wide regulations and statutes as described on the REE Ethics Webpage. You may be required to submit a financial disclosure report if hired for this position.

False Statements:
If you make a false statement in any part of your application, you may not be hired; may be fired after beginning work; or may be fined or jailed.

Reasonable Accommodation:
Reasonable accommodation is provided to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, or have questions regarding reasonable accommodation and/or accessibility for any part of the application and hiring process, please contact the Disability Program Manager on 202-720-6161 or through the DC Relay Service on (202) 855-1234 (TDD). The decision to grant reasonable accommodation is made on a case-by-case basis.

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