Student Trainee (Engineering)
Department Of Agriculture - Bowling Green, KY

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Be Remarkable, Make a Difference! Join the Natural Resources Conservation Service team and help us conserve our nation's Natural Resources!! Visit our web site ( http://www.nrcs.usda.gov ) to learn more.

The Natural Resources Conservation Service within Kentucky expects to hire 1 Student Trainee under the Pathways Internship Program in 2013. The duty station will be determined at the time of selection and will be within the list of possible locations on this announcement . This appointment is a temporary intern (student) position not to exceed August 31, 2013. The appointment made from this vacancy announcment is an excepted service position and does not confer competitive service, status eligibility, or offer permanent employment.

WHAT IS THE NATURAL RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE? The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is a Federal agency under the Department of Agriculture. Our mission is to help private landowners conserve, maintain, and improve our natural resources and environment. We deliver technical assistance based on sound scientific practices and suited to a customer's specific needs. Participation in our programs is voluntary, with cost shares and financial incentives available in some cases. Most work is done with local partners, and our partnership with local conservation districts serves almost every county in the nation, plus the Caribbean and Pacific Basin. Find out more through our website at http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/ !

HOW DOES THE PATHWAYS INTERNSHIP PROGRAM WORK? This position will provide hands-on experience for students that are enrolled in the specific discipline for which hired and are related to the student's academic program and career goals. Most placements will begin in Spring or Summer, 2013 (depending upon student availability).

The NRCS Pathways Internship Program is designed to attract students enrolled in a wide variety of education institutions with paid opportunities to explore Federal careers while still in school. The program exposes students to jobs in the Federal civil service by providing meaningful developmental work at the beginning of their careers, before their career paths are fully established. The flexible nature of the program also accomodates the need to hire students to complete temporary work or projects, or to work traditional "summer" jobs.
    KEY REQUIREMENTS
  • U.S. Citizenship Required
  • Suitable for Federal Employment, determined by Background Investigation.
  • Enrolled or accepted for enrollment as a degree-seeking student.
  • Must have a valid Motor Vehicle Operators License.

DUTIES: The trainee positions advertised are developmental positions designed to provide specialized training in the field of work related to the student's major field of study. Specific duties that will prepare you for becoming a professional Engineer include:

Civil/Agricultural Engineering Duties:

  • Gathering basic and field information used in the design of stabilzation structures, flood control projects, irrigation ditches, earth fills and other engineering projects
  • Assisting in field survey work including topgraphic, cross section, and profile
  • Preparing plans, specifications, and quantities
  • Drafting engineering plans from design notes, sketches and verbal instructions
  • Accompanying field engineers to observe methods used in providing technical assistance for resource conservation projects


  • QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED: Pathways Program candidates will need to meet the basic qualification requirements as follows:
      Must be a degree seeking college student enrolled at least half-time course load at an accredited institution of higher education.
    Be a student in good standing and and maintains at least 2.0 overall grade point average on a 4.0 scale or equivalent.

    To qualify for:

    GS-3 level - must have completed 1 academic year of qualifying post high school study (1 academic year equals 30 semester hours or 45 quarter hours).

    GS-4 level - must have completed 2 academic years of qualifying post high school study or have completed their Associate’s degree.

    GS-5 level- completion of four academic years of post High School leading to a bachelor's degree.

    NOTE: Unofficial college transcripts are required to verify education claims. Your transcripts must be legible. See the "How to Apply" section of this announcement.

    Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recongized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications (particularly positions with a positive eduction requirement). Therefore, applicants must report only attendance and/or degrees from achools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants can verify accreditation at the following website: http://www.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/index.htm

    Foreign Education: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show that the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been

    Pathways Program Requirements : You must sign a formal Pathways agreement, and meet and maintain all eligibility requirements for the Pathways Internship Program throughout participation in the program.

    Selective Service: If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959 , you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. See http://www.sss.gov/ .

    E-Verify: This employer will provide the Social Security Administration and, if necessary, the Department of Homeland Security with information of each new employee's Form I-9 to confirm work authorization.

    A background investigation will be required for all new appointments . Your continued employment will be subject to your successful completion of a background security investigation and favorable adjudication. Failure to successfully meet these requirements will be grounds for termination

    Trial Period: As a student under the Pathways Program you will serve on a trial basis. During your Trial Period you may be released due to performance, budget or other reasons.

    Reference Checks: The agency reserves the right to check your references, either in advance of an interview or after an interview. Applying for this announcement gives consent to these reference checks.

    Citizenship : You must be a U.S. citizen or national to receive consideration under this announcement.

    Driver's License: The incumbent of this position will serve as an incidental motor vehicle operator, requiring operation of a motor vehicle on both public and private roads during daylight and occasionally after dark. A valid state driver's license is required. You must have a good driving record or employment offer may be rescinded.

    Field work : The work will involve both an office environment and a field environment. The incumbent will frequently work at field sites, which requires physical fitness and common sense precautions typical for these settings.

    Travel required: You will be required to do some travel for workload, meetings, and training, and may be required to obtain, maintain, and use a government-issued charge card for your official travel.

    Suitability: If you are selected for this position you will be required to complete a Declaration for Federal Employment (OF-306) to determine your suitability for Federal employment, authorize a background investigation, and certify the accuracy of all the information in your application information.

    You must meet all eligibility requirements by the closing date of this announcement.

    HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED: Your application will be evaluated based upon review of your entire application package, including the responses you provide on the Occupational Questionnaire.

    We are specifically seeking and will be selecting students who:

    · Meet all Pathways eligibility requirements

    · Have a demonstrated interest in Agriculture or Natural Resources

    · Demonstrate excellence inside or outside the classroom

    Your opportunity for consideration may depend on how thoroughly you have prepared your application. If materials are not received, your applications will be evaluated solely on the information available and you may not receive full consideration or may not be considered eligible.

    Your application will initially be evaluated and rated under Category Rating and Selection Procedures. We will first review your resume and supporting documentation and compare this information to your responses on the occupational questionnaire to determine if you meet the minimum qualifications for this position. If qualified we will further evaluate your application package and questionnaire results to assess the quality, depth, and complexity of your accomplishments, experience, and education as they relate to the selection factors listed above. We will then place you in one of the following categories, and only those in the Best Qualified category will be referred to the hiring manager for further consideration.

    Best Qualified: Applicants possess all of the job related competencies identifies as important for successful job performance.

    W ell -Qualified: Applicants possesses a majority (i.e., more than half) of the job related competencies needed for successful job performance.

    Qualified: Applicants meets the basic eligibility and minimum qualification requirements, but does not meet the definition of Well-Qualified or Best Qualified describe above.

    Veterans’ preference is applied after applicants are assessed. Veterans’ preference eligibles who meet the qualification requirements are placed in the appropriate category and are listed ahead of non-preference eligibles. Veteran preference eligibles that have (and document) a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10 percent will be listed in the highest quality category.

    The on-line questionnaire in this announcement may consist of multiple choices or yes/no responses to questions developed for this position. Applicants must choose the best answer that is supported by their resume, transcripts, and other supporting documentation that has been requested. YOUR RESUME MUST SUPPORT YOUR RESPONSES TO THE OCCUPATIONAL QUESTIONNAIRE, AND MUST REFLECT BOTH THE EDUCATON AND EXPERIENCE REQUIRED FOR THIS POSITION, AND THE ANSWERS YOU SELECT IN THE ON-LINE QUESTIONNAIRE. WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU PREVIEW THE QUESTIONNAIRE BEFORE COMPLETING IT, AND CROSS-REFERENCE AS NEEEDED TO ENSURE YOUR RESUME SUPPORTS THE ANSWERS YOU SELECT IN THE ONLINE QUESTIONNAIRE. Please provide us enough detail for us to clearly determine your levels of experience, knowledge, skills, and abilities. Note: In order to receive credit for your specialized experience, you must fully describe your responsibilities and show the actual time (years, months, and hours per week) spent in such activities.

    If materials are not received by the closing date your application will be evaluated solely on the information available and you may not receive full consideration or be considered eligible. All the information you provide may be verified by review of your application, by checking references and through other means, such as the interview process. Any exaggeration of your experience, false statements, or attempts to conceal information may be grounds for lowering your rating, not hiring you, or removal after employment begins.

    BENEFITS: Temporary working for NRCS offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, paid vacation (annual leave), sick leave, and holidays.

    OTHER INFORMATION: These jobs are being filled by an alternative (excepted appointment) hiring process and are not in the competitive service.

    Veterans' Preference (Category Rating): If you are a veteran who is eligible under law for veteran's preference we encourage you to document your preference in your application materials. Under Category Rating Procedures veterans who meet (and document) preference criteria are listed above non-preference eligibles within the same quality category (best qualified, well qualified, etc.) in which they are assigned based on job-related assessment tools. Not all veterans are eligible for preference. To learn more and find out if you qualify for preference visit the Feds Hire Vets website at http://www.fedshirevets.gov/job/veterans.aspx . You must provide acceptable documentation of your preference when you apply to this announcement or you will not be awarded preference. This includes a Member 4 copy of your DD214 showing character of service (honorable etc.), and, if claiming 10 point preference, Standard Form SF-15 'Application for 10-point Veterans' Preference' with all applicable supporting information attached. See the 'Veterans Information' link on the last page of this announcement for more information.

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