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Forest Service Ecologist in Missoula, Montana

Summary This ecologist position supports the USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station (RMRS), located in Missoula, Montana. The employee is responsible for performing a variety of complex and recurring duties in support of forest ecology research activities. For additional information about the duties of this position, please contact Michael Schwartz at michael.k.schwartz@usda.gov or 406-542-4161. Responsibilities Organize, verify, and refine collected ecological data. Study and evaluate ecological data and summarize methods, findings, and recommendations. Interpret and adapt field collection and laboratory guidelines for application to specific ecological situations or problems. Help develop project work plans which include selecting the methods for collection, identification, evaluation, and pilot testing. Prepare ecological samples and gather scientific data using standard laboratory analyses. Investigate and analyze research data collection approaches and/or environmental conditions in order to recommend or implement solutions that satisfy diverse research objectives. Resolve administrative and safety concerns related to ecological projects. Establish and communicate guidelines and performance requirements to employees. Provide advice, counsel, or instruction on administrative and work matters. Requirements Conditions of Employment Qualifications In order to qualify, you must meet the eligibility and qualifications requirements as defined below by the closing date of the announcement. For more information on the qualifications for this position, visit the Office of Personnel Management's General Schedule Qualification Standards. Your application and resume must clearly show that you possess the experience requirements. Transcripts must be provided for qualifications based on education. Provide course descriptions as necessary. Basic Requirement for the 0408 Ecologist Series: Degree: biology, or a related field of science underlying ecological research that included at least 30 semester hours in basic and applied biological sciences. These hours must have included at least 9 semester hours in ecology, and 12 semester hours in physical and mathematical sciences. In addition to meeting the basic requirement, you must also possess experience and/or directly related education in the amounts listed below. Minimum Qualifications: For the GS-9: You must have one year specialized experience equivalent to the GS-7 grade level in the Federal service. To qualify at this grade level, your resume must show all of the following: Adapting, designing, planning and executing ecology-based field and laboratory projects Training and directing crews in collecting ecological field data and samples for analyses, including establishing test and control plots Compiling summarizing and analyzing data, and managing datasets using standard software and web-based computer programs. OR 2 years of progressively higher-level graduate education leading to a master's degree or master's or equivalent graduate degree, directly related to the work of the position. Applicable degrees include: Ecology; Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. OR An appropriate combination of specialized experience and education (only graduate education in excess of 18 semester hours may be used to qualify applicants for this grade level). The education must have been obtained in an accredited college or university and demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to do the work. 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. TIME IN GRADE REQUIREMENT: If you are a current federal employee in the General Schedule (GS) pay plan and applying for a promotion opportunity, you must meet time-in-grade (TIG) requirements of 52 weeks of service at the next lower grade level in the normal line of progression for the position being filled. This requirement must be met by the closing date of this announcement. Education See above for education that may be qualifying for the specific grade level. Additional Information The first 30 applicants who complete and submit an application will be reviewed for referral to the hiring manager. You are encouraged to apply for the position as soon as possible. This announcement will remain open until the closing date indicated; however, individuals who apply after the date that the limit is reached will be reviewed for consideration only if no selection is made from the initial group or if additional vacancies occur and additional candidates are needed. If you un-submit your application to make changes or updates, the date the application is last submitted will be used to determine those who are considered to have met the cut-off criteria. Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP), Reemployment Priority List (RPL) or Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP): To exercise selection priority for this vacancy, CTAP/RPL/ICTAP candidates must meet the basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors. CTAP/ICTAP 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/ICTAP applicants must receive a rating of at least 85 out of a possible 100. Veterans who are preference eligible or who have been separated from the armed forces under honorable conditions after three years or more of continuous active service are eligible for consideration under the Veteran's Employment Opportunity Act (VEOA). Land Management Workforce Flexibility Act (LMWFA) provides current or former temporary or term employees of federal land management agencies opportunity to compete for permanent competitive service positions. Individuals must have more than 24 months of service without a break between appointments of two or more years. Service must be in the competitive service and have been at a successful level of performance or better. Part-time and intermittent service will be credited only for time actually worked. Non-pay status such as leave without pay is credited for up to six months in a calendar year; anything beyond six months is not credited. Applicants are responsible for providing sufficient information/documentation to determine if the 24 month criteria is met. 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. Forest Service daycare facilities are not available. Government Housing is not available. Daycare facilities are not available. This position is not eligible for telework. The Forest Service may use certain incentives and hiring flexibilities, currently offered by the Federal government, to attract highly qualified candidates. Additional information is available at https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/pay-leave/pay-and-leave-flexibilities-for-recruitment-and-retention/

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