Job Description

Job Summary

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 non-competitive hiring authority (i.e., 30% or More Disabled Veteran, VRA, Schedule A, Interchange Agreement, etc.).

The incumbent serves as a Biological Science Technician in The Foodborne Contaminants Research (FCR) Unit in Albany, CA. The FCR conducts research in animal health and food safety by developing new technologies and improving existing methodologies for the detection of prions, pathogens, and bacterial toxins. Specifically, this position requires experience in immunogen production, the generation of monoclonal antibodies and applied immunoassay methods. We develop and validate new technologies and transfer this knowledge to the scientific community, the food industry, and regulatory agencies, where implementation positively impacts animal health and food safety.

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

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

Duties

Major duties of this position include:

  • Generating, purifying and validating protein immunogens using recombinant DNA technology.
  • Mammalian cell culture focused on the generation of hybridoma cell lines.
  • High throughput ELISA based screening of hybridoma cell conditioned media for the selection of monoclonal antibody producing cells.
  • Bio-conjugation and purification of proteins.
  • Characterization of monoclonal antibodies that includes determination of isotype, epitope mapping, gene sequencing, and immunoassay performance.
  • Conducting applied immunoassays for the detection of target antigens in various substrates.
  • Maintaining cell and chemical inventories.
  • Preparation of solutions, reagents and standards for laboratory use and sample analysis.
  • Collecting, preparing and conducting laboratory analysis on research samples.
  • Collecting and reporting research data according to instructions and standardized procedures (e.g., recognition of valid data, data quality assessment and appropriate storage).
  • Transcribing research data from forms or devices into a computerized database and generating statistical reports and graphics.
  • Preparing a description of methods used for a project or research report.

Additional Information

What To Expect Next

Once your complete application package (including all required documents) is received, we will conduct an evaluation of your qualifications and determine your ranking.  The best qualified candidates will be referred for further consideration and possible interview.  You will be notified of the outcome.

BENEFITS

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.


Other Information

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.

How to Apply

Your application package must be complete by 11:59 p.m. (EST) on Friday, July 26, 2013.  You must apply online or by fax (see below for details).  Applications sent by mail (including e-mail) or hand-delivered will not be accepted.  Certain individuals are entitled to file a late application and must contact the Agency Contact listed below for details and application instructions. 

Choose either Option A or Option B to apply for this position:

Option A:  Online Application

Click the Apply Online button to create an account or log in to your existing USAJOBS account.  Follow the prompts to complete the occupational questionnaire and upload (or reuse) supporting documents.  You must click the Submit My Answers button at the end of the process.

Note: To verify your application is complete, log into your USAJOBS account, https://my.usajobs.gov/Account/Login, select the Application Status link and then select the more information link for this position. The Details page will display the status of your application, the documentation received and processed, and any correspondence the agency has sent related to this application. Your uploaded documents may take several hours to clear the virus scan process.
To return to an incomplete application, log into your USAJOBS account and click Update Application in the vacancy announcement. You must re-select your resume and/or other documents from your USAJOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

To fax supporting documents that you are unable to upload:
1. Click here to print a fax cover page 
2. Complete all blocks on the cover page using Vacancy ID 916110.  Documents will not be processed if information is missing.
3. Fax the completed cover page and your documents to 1-478-757-3144.

Option B:  Fax
If you cannot apply online, follow these steps to fax your complete application package.
1. Click the following link to print the occupational questionnaire View Occupational Questionnaire;
2. Click here to print the 1203FX form, which you will use to provide your responses to the occupational questionnaire; and  
3. Fax the completed 1203FX (all 6 pages), your resume, and supporting documents (including those specified in the Required Documents section below) to 1-478-757-3144.  The 1203FX will serve as the cover page for your fax transmission and must be placed on top of all other documents.

How You Will Be Evaluated

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 the principles of biological science related to the generation of monoclonal antibodies, the construction and expression of recombinant proteins, and the development and application of immunoassays for analytic detection.

  • Ability to use scientific instrumentation for biological research used in the generation and characterization of monoclonal antibodies and the performance of immunoassays.

  • Ability to adapt, develop or improve research techniques and procedures.

  • Knowledge of procedures and methods for safe handling of pathogenic bacteria, toxins and prions.

  • Skill in the use of personal computers and software packages for data collection, analysis, and presentation.

     

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.

Required Documents

The following documents are required:  
   - Assessment questionnaire (completed online or submitted by fax using the 1203FX) 
   - Resume

In addition, you may need to submit supplemental documentation (as outlined below).  Failure to submit supplemental information by the closing date of this announcement will result in the loss of the particular consideration you are requesting.

Veterans' Preference:  To claim 5-point veterans' preference, submit Member 4 copy of your DD-214 or other proof of eligibility.  To claim 10-point veterans' preference, submit an SF-15, Application for 10-Point Veterans' Preference, plus the documentation required by that form.  Active Duty Service Members must submit a statement of discharge/certification of release or an official written document from the armed forces that certifies you are expected to be discharged or released from active duty service in the armed forces under honorable conditions no later than 120 days from the date the certification is signed.  Enlisted Record Briefs and military identification do NOT qualify as official documentation.

Transcripts:  If you indicate that you possess any form of post-secondary education, you must submit transcripts detailing your coursework and/or degree(s). At the time your education was obtained, the entire institution, applicable school within the institution, or the applicable curriculum must have been appropriately accredited by an accrediting organization recognized by the Secretary, U.S. Department of Education. You may lose consideration for this position if you fail to provide this information.

Foreign Education:  To receive credit for education outside the U.S., you must show proof that the education has been submitted to a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign educational credentials and that such education has been deemed to be at least equivalent to that gained in conventional U.S. education programs.