The present position is for a research biologist with the California Current Ecosystem Program housed within NOAA's Marine Mammal Laboratory. Primary responsibilities will include managing a long-term study of California sea lions (and other pinnipeds) in Channel Islands National Park, California. Fieldwork may require stints of approx. 12 weeks annually (8 weeks continuous) at a remote field station on San Miguel Island.
As a Research Biologist, some of your specific duties will include:
- Carry out one or more research projects on marine mammals in the North Pacific Ocean and Arctic seas, addressing topics such as abundance, distribution, and population structure; survival and reproductive success; feeding ecology, growth, and condition; disease; human impacts and environmental factors.
- Serve as an advisor on biological and ecosystem science work and aid personnel within the office participating in studies.
- Publish research in scientific journals.
- Develop collaborative research and educational partnerships with appropriate government agencies, organizations, universities, and the public to advance and apply marine mammal science.
Qualification requirements in the vacancy announcements are based on the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Qualification Standards Handbook, which contains federal qualification standards. This handbook is available on the Office of Personnel Management's website located at: https://www.opm.gov/policy.
BASIC REQUIREMENTS: This position has a positive Education Requirement in addition to at least one year of Specialized Experience OR substitution of education for experience OR combination (if applicable) in order to be found minimally qualified. Transcripts must be submitted with your application package. You MUST meet the following requirements:
To qualify at the 0401 series:
A. Degree: biological sciences, agriculture, natural resource management, chemistry, or related disciplines appropriate to the position.
B. Combination of education and experience: Courses equivalent to a major, as shown in A above, plus appropriate experience or additional education.
SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: Applicants must possess one year of specialized experience equivalent in difficulty and responsibility to the next lower grade level in the Federal Service. Specialized experience is experience that has equipped the applicant with the particular competencies/knowledge, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position. This experience need not have been in the federal government.
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.
To qualify at the ZP-3 or GS-11 level:
SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: One full year (52 weeks) of specialized experience equivalent to the ZP-2 or GS-09 in the Federal service. Specialized experience MUST include all of the following:
Participating in pinniped research in support of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and Endangered Species Act (ESA) (e.g. Planning and conducting experiments; collecting, analyzing and interpreting data; writing reports or publications);
Utilizing quantitative analysis of marine mammal population data for publication and management applications; and
Developing, documenting and managing data workflows of research projects (e.g. database management of field data, image data, and biological samples).
SUBSTITUTION OF EDUCATION: Master's or equivalent graduate degree.
COMBINATION OF EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE: A combination of education and experience as described above.
NOTE: Only graduate education in excess of one year is qualifying for combination.
Education completed in colleges or universities outside the United States may be used to meet the above requirements. You must provide acceptable documentation that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States.