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    NASA leads the nation on a great journey of discovery, seeking new knowledge and understanding of our planet Earth, our Sun and solar system, and the universe out to its farthest reaches and back to its earliest moments of existence. NASA's Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and the nation's science community use space observatories to explore the secrets of the universe, search for life elsewhere, and to protect and improve life on Earth.

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    The Senior Scientist for the Heliophysics Division reports directly to the Heliophysics Division Director on all matters pertaining to the science activities in which the Division is actively engaged. In addition, the Senior Scientist provides recommendations, advice, and consultation on all science-related aspects of NASA's Heliophysics Division to the Heliophysics Director.

    The Senior Scientist for Heliophysics will serve on an agile and diverse team whose core values include
    excellence, integrity, transparency, teamwork, and a growth mindset towards planning and coordinating
    NASA programs in research, development, operations of missions and instrumentation, and strategic management of available resources in Heliophysics and related fields.

    Specific Responsibilities Include:

    Serving as a senior science adviser to the Heliophysics Division Director within the Science Mission Directorate (SMD) on matters concerning the scientific content and strategy of the Heliophysics Division.

    Organizing and overseeing a broad program of research and analysis required to provide the basis for an effective and balanced Heliophysics portfolio to enable a continuing robust and long-term Heliophysics System Observatory and research programs.

    Assessing and coordinating scientific inputs to support the development of the Heliophysics science strategy consistent with scientific priorities established by the Heliophysics Division Director and Science Mission Directorate senior management officials.

    In conjunction with the Heliophysics Division Director, the incumbent will support coordination of heliophysics science-related activities between NASA offices and other Federal agencies, and international partner agencies and multinational coordination organizations. This includes engaging with these agencies and groups to discuss mutual scientific interests and implementation planning and to ensure that they have accurate awareness of NASA's relevant expertise, capabilities, and plans, such that the Heliophysics Division science and research future plans are appropriately consistent with national and international objectives and initiatives.

    Assessing and coordinating scientific inputs for broad agency announcements for heliophysics exploration missions, including inter-agency and internationally supported opportunities.

    Representing the Heliophysics Division Director to the scientific community through advisory committees and other groups such as the National Research Council.

    Supporting the Heliophysics Division Director in presentation of the science aspects of the Heliophysics Division to NASA top management, the Office of Management and Budget, the Congress, and other agencies and organizations as appropriate.

    Advising the Heliophysics Division Director on the coordination of heliophysics science expertise within the Agency at the appropriate Centers.

    Current Agency policy requires that ST appointments be time limited (temporary promotions or term appointments). The initial appointment will be for 3 years, with the possibility of extending up to an additional 2 years. If selectee is currently a permanent NASA civil service employee he/she will receive a temporary promotion. Employee will then return to a position at a grade level no lower than the grade previously held. If selectee is on a nonpermanent civil service appointment, a permanent civil service appointment in another Agency, or is not currently on a civil service appointment he/she will receive a term appointment. This appointment may be made permanent without further competition.

    Travel Required

    Occasional travel - Travel may be required for training or other work-related duties

    Supervisory status


    Promotion Potential


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    Conditions Of Employment

    • Position subject to pre-employment background investigation
    • A financial disclosure statement is required upon appointment to SL.
    • A one-year probationary period may be required
    • Occasional travel may be required

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


    Candidates must possess heliophysics science expertise at least 1 year of which is in positions at or comparable to the GS-15 level, and must be a recognized subject matter expert.

    Also, candidates must possess;
    1. Extensive knowledge of the scientific discipline areas associated with the study of the sun and the interaction of the sun with the Earth and the solar system;
    2. Demonstrated ability as an individual who can work within a team but also provide guidance, instruction, direction and leadership to that team to achieve aligned results; and
    3. Demonstrated ability to develop long-term strategies to ensure scientific priorities are established and met.


    Candidates must possess the following basic requirements:
    1.Degree: physical science, engineering, or mathematics that included 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science such as mechanics, dynamics, properties of materials, and electronics;
    2. Combination of education and experience -- education equivalent to one of the majors shown in A above that included at least 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science, plus appropriate experience or additional education.

    Additional information

    All qualified candidates will be referred to a panel of subject matter experts for further evaluation against the NASA SL or ST Evaluation Criteria as stated in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. Experience in these criteria MUST be addressed within the NASA-provided online form. Refer to the How to Apply section for complete instructions.

    As a condition of employment, male applicants born after December 31, 1959, must certify that they have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. In order to receive preference in hiring, you must clearly identify your claim for veterans preference on your resume.

    Your USAJOBS account asks you to assign a name to each of your resumes. When you apply to a NASA position, we will show you the text of the resume you have submitted, but we do not maintain the name you have assigned to that resume. If you wish to keep track of that information, we recommend you make note of it at the time you apply.

    U.S. citizenship is required.

    Qualified NASA term employees who have term conversion eligibility under the NASA Flexibility Act of 2004 will be referred and considered equally with other NASA permanent employees under internal competitive placement procedures.

    Relocation expenses may be paid consistent with NASA's policy.

    How You Will Be Evaluated

    All candidates will be referred to a panel of subject matter experts for further evaluation against the NASA ST Evaluation Criteria as stated in the NASA ST Evaluation Criteria section below. Experience in these criteria MUST be addressed within the NASA-provided online form. Refer to the How to Apply section for complete instructions. We strongly recommend you complete your answers to these five criteria off-line in a text document in advance of beginning the application process, so that you can insert them into the electronic form. Incomplete applications are not saved.

    NASA ST Evaluation Criteria

    1. Education Level and Training. In addition to degree information, please include your pattern of continuing development to maintain currency and level of skills.

    2. Technical Excellence and Contributions. Please include a. through c. below in your response. Include the impact on key Center and relevant NASA/Agency and national programs.
    a. Experience/Accomplishments
    b. Technical Problem Solving
    c. Publications and Information Transfer

    3. Awards and Recognition. This criterion includes recognition of your accomplishments by peers in the broad scientific and/or engineering community and customers.

    4. Outside Professional Activities.

    5. Corporate Cooperation and Technical Leadership Skills. Included in this criterion are leadership skills in directing or participating in technical team activities, as well as coordinating those activities within and outside the Center. Also included are coaching/mentoring and diversity and inclusion.

    Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance

    Not Applicable

    Drug test required


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    Required Documents

    NASA's application process has been specifically developed to ensure that we only ask you for the information we absolutely need to evaluate your qualifications and eligibility. In order to apply for this position, you only need to submit your resume and answer the screening questions and supplemental information. No additional documentation is accepted at the time of application. (For example you need not submit narrative 'KSA' statements; they are not required and will not be evaluated.) In this way we allow you to focus on preparing a resume that best describes your background and abilities. For assistance in preparing your resume, consult the Applicant Guide. Nothing further is required until requested by the Human Resources Office. At that point, we may ask you to submit documentation to support statements made in your resume. For example, we may ask you to provide academic transcripts or proof of Federal employment status. If you are claiming veterans' preference, we may ask you to submit proof of veterans preference (DD-214, and, if claiming 10-point preference, SF-15 plus proof required by that form). If you fail to provide the required documents within the stated time period, we may withdraw a job offer and/or remove you from further consideration.

    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.

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    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.


    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.

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    How to Apply

    This vacancy is being filled through NASA STARS, an automated Staffing and Recruiting System. NASA partners with USAJOBS in providing a seamless application process. Before you begin the application process, please read the vacancy announcement carefully and have all required information available. You may begin the process of submitting your resume by clicking on the "Apply Online" link. In order to be considered, you must submit a resume completed on the USAJOBS site. When completing your USAJOBS resume, please remember that NASA limits resumes to the equivalent of approximately SIX typed pages, or approximately 32,000 characters including spaces. NASA does not accept resumes uploaded to USAJOBS from a second source or documents attached through USAJOBS' document attachment feature. Once you submit your resume to NASA, you will be asked to provide additional information, including statements addressing the NASA SL or ST Evaluation Criteria. Because your answers will not be saved until you complete the entire application, WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT YOU ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS IN A SEPARATE TEXT DOCUMENT AND INSERT THEM INTO THE ONLINE FORM. INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS ARE NOT SAVED. To receive consideration do NOT answer the questions with "see resume". You may edit a previously submitted application if the announcement is still open.

    If you are unable to apply electronically for this position, submit your resume and supplemental questions to: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Resume Operations Center, Mailstop: HS50, Marshall Space Flight Center, AL 35812. DO NOT submit your resume directly to the Center advertising this vacancy. Mailed resumes must be received by the close of business on the closing date of the announcement. Hard copy resume requirements are provided at: Hard Copy Resume Requirements.

    If you are a first time applicant, we recommend that you review NASA's Applicant Guide to ensure that you are providing a complete resume. Failure to submit the supplemental data and a resume that contains all of the required information may result in loss of consideration for positions in which you are interested.

    All applications must be received no later than midnight Eastern Time on the closing date of the announcement.

    Agency contact information

    Scott Weathersby


    NASA's Resume Operations Center
    4200 Rideout Road, Mailstop HS50
    Marshall Space Flight Center, AL 35812
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    Learn more about what it's like to work at Headquarters, NASA, what the agency does, and about the types of careers this agency offers.


    Next steps

    Candidates for NASA positions are evaluated using our automated staffing and recruitment system, NASA STARS, which compares your skills and experience as described in your resume with the requirements of the position. If you are found to be a highly qualified candidate, you will be referred to the selecting official for further consideration. (In some cases, individuals with priority for special consideration must be considered and selected before other candidates.) Whether or not you are contacted for an interview depends upon the location of the position and the judgment of the selecting official. At NASA, we pride ourselves on efficient and timely recruitment actions, and you can normally expect to learn the outcome of the selection process in a fairly short period of time. In addition, to ensure that you can measure progress for yourself, NASA provides you with regularly updated information on the status of the vacancy announcement.

Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy And gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.

Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:

  • An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Legal and regulatory guidance

This job originated on www.usajobs.gov. For the full announcement and to apply, visit www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/510391400. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.