This position is in Region 7, Lab Services & Applied Science Division, Applied Sciences Branch. If selected, you must work at the location stated in this announcement. About Region 7: Region 7 Information.
At the entry level of this position, you will:
Advise project managers and their management on proper scopes of work for site investigations and environmental and geological studies; review, comment, and/or concur upon such scopes of work.
Provide technical input on vapor intrusion studies/investigations to determine whether groundwater contaminants have impacted indoor air and present a potential risk to human health. Evaluate environmental sample results and conclusions from these studies/investigations for technical accuracy and to determine mitigation alternatives.
Participate in a variety of meetings concerning the course of action and decisions concerning Superfund and RCRA sites.
Provide advice to Federal or industrial representatives on problems of a technical nature; Under supervision by higher-graded specialists, represent the Agency’s position regarding the technical aspects of site investigations and clean-ups during negotiations.
When entering a Federal job at a grade level lower than the highest promotion potential level, you may be promoted to more complex duties and work more independently, as your career progresses.
You will spend less than 25% of your work time on contracts, grants/cooperative agreements, and/or interagency agreements.
25% or less - You will travel up to 25% of each month.
Job family (Series)
Conditions of Employment
If you are selected, a pre-employment background check is required.
You must be a U.S. citizen.
EPA and non-EPA applicants must submit transcripts/course listings.
Position has educational/degree requirements (see Qualifications section).
You must submit a resume and required documents-see How to Apply section.
If you are selected, you must complete a one year probationary period.
This position is designated as Moderate Risk and requires a background investigation. Unless an appropriate background investigation is already on record with the Office of Personnel Management, you must undergo a background investigation.
In addition to the educational requirements, we are looking for at least one year of specialized experience related to this position as described below:
To qualify for the GS-11 level, you need to have at least one year of full-time experience equivalent to the GS-09 level defined as applying geological principles related to Superfund and The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) in remedial and removal action decision making. - OR Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree; or 3 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree in the academic discipline as described below - OR an equivalent combination of education and experience.
To qualify for the GS-12 level, you need to have at least one year of full-time experience equivalent to the GS-11 level defined as assisting in investigations, interpreting field data, and evaluating groundwater cleanup methods at sites or facilities that are contaminating groundwater; interpreting and implementing the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and other federal regulations/policies/guidance documents pertaining to groundwater contamination.
Your answers to the online assessment will be used to evaluate your competencies in the following areas:
Knowledge of concepts, principles and practices of hydrogeology and environmental science that enables the incumbent to investigate assigned portions of Superfund and RCRA hazardous waste sites.
Skill in applying and adapting hydrogeologic and other scientific practices, technologies and methods to the completion of Superfund/RCRA environmental investigations and remediation actions.
Knowledge of professional hydrogeologic or scientific concepts, principles, and practices applicable to groundwater and soil remediation techniques used at Superfund and RCRA sites.
Skill in explaining hydrogeologic/technical principles to non-technical persons involved in Superfund and RCRA sites.
Knowledge of specialized safety training as required to meet field health and safety requirements.
Knowledge of related scientific and engineering fields and the capacity to adapt practices from these fields where relevant guidance is lacking in a specialty area.
Knowledge of the Comprehensive Environmental Response Act (CERCLA), National Contingency Plan (NCP), National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA), Clean Water Act, hazardous waste regulations and other environmental statutes.
Skill in oral communication.
Skill in written communication.
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.
If you have part-time work experience, read this:
EPA Announcement Policies and Procedures.
A bachelor’s degree from an accredited or pre-accredited college or university in:
geology, plus 20 additional semester hours in any combination of mathematics, physics, chemistry, biological science, structural, chemical, civil, mining or petroleum engineering, computer science, planetary geology, comparative planetology, geophysics, meteorology, hydrology, oceanography, physical geography, marine geology, and cartography.
B. Combination of education and experience - course work as shown in A above, plus appropriate experience or additional education.
Evaluation of Experience:
Acceptable experience may have been gained through geological field or laboratory work that provided a means of obtaining professional knowledge of the theory and application of the principles of geology and closely related sciences, e.g., geophysics, geochemistry, or hydrology. Such work generally must have involved making close observations, taking samples, handling various types of instruments and equipment, assembling geologic data from source materials, and analyzing and reporting findings orally and in writing. Experience that involved only one phase of geology work, e.g., collecting samples, would not be acceptable as providing the required professional knowledge of the theory and principles of geology. In some situations, professional scientific experience in other fields may be accepted in part as professional geological experience. Such experience must have been preceded by appropriate education in geology or by professional geological experience, and must have contributed directly and significantly to the applicant's professional geological competence. Examples include some positions in geophysics, mining engineering, soils science, physical oceanography, hydrology, climatology, biology, analytic or experimental chemistry, metallurgy, and comparable fields where the normal duties or results of investigations have been extended to the solution of geologic problems by the applicant. Ordinary functions of positions such as seismic, computer, petroleum or mining engineer, mine superintendent, or metallurgist generally are not considered professional geological experience. To receive credit for geological experience obtained in positions that are not full-time professional geological positions, the applicant is responsible for indicating clearly the actual time or percentage of time devoted to geologic duties within such positions, and for giving adequate descriptions of the geologic functions.
This position is in the bargaining unit.
Are you a Displaced Federal Employee? If so, please read the Required Documents section and visit the EPA website for additional information: EPA Announcement Policies and Procedures
EPA participates in E-Verify. E-Verify is an Internet based system operated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in partnership with the Social Security Administration (SSA) that enables participating employers to electronically verify the employment eligibility of their newly hired employees. For additional information: EPA Announcement Policies and Procedures.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values at EPA. Our excellence can only be fully realized by staff who share our commitment to these values. Successful candidates are committed to advancing equity and inclusion in the Agency’s workplace and mission. We encourage applications from candidates with a variety of personal experiences, values, and worldviews that arise from differences of culture and circumstance.
If you are selected, travel, transportation, and relocation expenses will not be paid by EPA. Any travel, transportation, and relocation expenses associated with reporting to work in this position will be your responsibility.
Except in special circumstances, those new to the federal government will be hired at the starting salary (step 1) of the applicable grade range listed above.
This position has portable work. If selected for this position, you may be authorized to telework after meeting eligibility requirements if approved by the supervisor/manager. Telework is available based on agency policy and/or applicable collective bargaining agreement which may not allow for full-time telework. NOTE: The agency is currently utilizing maximum telework flexibilities due to COVID. Once normal operations resume, you will be required to report to the location stated in this announcement.
How You Will Be Evaluated
You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.
We will review your resume and required documents to ensure you meet the basic qualification requirements. Your resume must address the knowledge, skills, and abilities listed in the Qualifications section. If you meet basic qualification requirements, your application will be further evaluated based on your answers to the online assessment. Your responses to the online assessment will be used to measure the degree to which your background matches the requirements for the position. You are being evaluated under the category rating method which means, if you are determined to be qualified, you will be placed into the ‘Best Qualified’, ‘Well Qualified’, or ‘Qualified’ category. NOTE: Preference eligible veterans must be selected, or decline further consideration, before applicants who are ineligible for veterans’ preference can be selected (to learn more, visit Veterans' Preference).
We will compare your resume and supporting documentation to your responses on the assessment questionnaire. If you rate yourself higher than is supported by your application materials, your responses may be adjusted and/or you may be excluded from consideration for this job. We will evaluate your qualifications and eligibility and notify you if you meet minimum qualification requirements. If you are referred for consideration, you may be subject to additional assessments.
We do not require a separate statement responding to the competencies, also referred to as Knowledges, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs). However, your resume should clearly show possession of these competencies.
To preview questions please click here.
Background checks and security clearance
Drug test required
Position sensitivity and risk
Moderate Risk (MR)
Trust determination process
Documents to be submitted online:
You should ensure your social security number, date of birth, and any other personal information are redacted.
Separated veterans claiming 5-point preference:
- Resume clearly stating your experience related to this position as described in the Duties section and Qualifications section. In describing your experience, you need to be clear and specific. We may not make assumptions regarding your experience.
- Responses to the online assessment questionnaire (you must complete this online - it is not a document you need to upload).
- College transcripts - required to submit either unofficial transcripts or a list of courses that includes school(s) attended, school address, course title, grades earned, completion dates, department, and quarter or semester hours earned. NOTE: Official educational transcripts are not required at the time of application; however, if you are selected, you must provide official transcripts before you start work with EPA. IF EDUCATION WAS COMPLETED AT A FOREIGN INSTITUTION: You must submit an equivalency evaluation with your application as described here: EPA Announcement Policies and Procedures.
- Veterans' Preference Documents:
- DD-214 Member 4 copy (or other copy indicating character of service) or other official document/statement from the Armed Forces showing separation, discharge, or release from active duty; document must show separation is under honorable conditions (Honorable or General Discharge)
Separated veterans claiming 10-point preference based on compensable service-connected disability of 10% or more:
- DD-214 Member 4 copy (or other copy indicating character of service); document must show separation is under honorable conditions (Honorable or General Discharge); and
- VA letter stating overall/combined disability rating (percentage); and
- SF-15 (use current version: SF-15 Form) (see page 2 for documents that can be submitted in lieu of the DD-214 and VA letter)
Other separated veterans claiming 10-point preference OR spouses, widows/widowers, or mothers claiming 10-point derived preference:
Active duty service members:
- SF-15 (use current version: SF-15 Form); and
- Other required documentation indicated on the SF-15
- Certification from the armed forces documenting active duty dates, expected discharge/release date, campaign medals/badges, and character of service (a certification is any written document from the armed forces that certifies you are expected to be discharged/released from active duty service in the armed forces under honorable conditions (Honorable or General Discharge) within 120 days after you submit the certification)
- Displaced Federal employees under ICTAP/CTAP: copy of your most recent performance appraisal, proof of eligibility, and your most current SF-50 noting position, grade level, tenure, and duty station.
To learn more about submitting documentation, visit Uploading Documents to USAJOBS.
If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:
Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.
A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Opens in a new windowLearn more about federal benefits.
Join EPA in protecting human health and the environment and enjoy many work life quality options! Working for the EPA offers you a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, life insurance, health benefits, and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System. To learn more about us, visit Life and Careers at EPA.
Review our benefits
Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.
This job is open to
U.S. citizens, nationals or those who owe allegiance to the U.S.
Clarification from the agency