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This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:  Interdisciplinary Supervisory Research Engineer/Supervisory Physical Scientist, ZP-0801/1301-V
Department:  Department Of Commerce
Agency:  National Institute of Standards and Technology
Job Announcement Number:  NISTEL-2013-0029

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.
$123,758.00 to $155,500.00 / Per Year
Friday, April 19, 2013 to Friday, May 17, 2013
Competitive Service, Career, Career-Conditional - Permanent, Full time
1 vacancy in the following location(s):
Gaithersburg, MD, USView Map
20899View Map
All qualified U.S. citizens. This notice is issued under direct-hire authority to recruit new talent to occupations for which NIST has a severe shortage of candidates.


Founded in 1901, NIST is a non-regulatory federal agency within Commerce. NIST's mission is to promote U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science, standards, and technology in ways that enhance economic security and improve our quality of life. To learn more about NIST, follow NIST on youtube, twitter, or facebook.

The incumbent will serve as the Chief, Materials and Structural Systems Division in the Engineering Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Maryland. 


  • You must be a U.S. citizen.
  • You must be registered for selective service (as applicable).
  • You must be suitable for Federal employment.


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The incumbent will serve as the Chief, Materials and Structural Systems Division in the Engineering Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The responsibilities of the position are to plan, coordinate, lead and direct the overall scientific and technical programs; control the budget; and recruit personnel for the Division. The incumbent will lead and manage the Division to achieve scientific and technical excellence in its measurement science research and to achieve impacts through broad-based end-use of standards and tools resulting from the research. The Division:

  • Promotes U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness in areas of critical national priority by anticipating and meeting the measurement science and standards needs for materials and structures used in construction, manufacturing and infrastructure in ways that enhance economic prosperity and improve the quality of life.
  • Carries out mission functions in building materials and structures; engineering and manufacturing materials; sustainability metrics and practices; national earthquake hazards reduction; national windstorm impact reduction; national construction safety teams; and other authorities for disaster and failure event studies.
  • Carries out other measurement science research and services to support mission functions as may be necessary, including sustainability, service life prediction, and life cycle assessment of materials performance; safety and resilience performance of structures; and cyber-physical systems.

Responsibilities of the position include leading and managing the Division’s engagement with industry, standards and codes development organizations, and other federal agencies, including establishment of mutually beneficial international collaborations.

The incumbent will be responsible for program planning and management, including development of program and project proposals for annual budget requests, management of programs to achieve results in accordance with milestone schedules and within budget, and development of partnerships with other Engineering Laboratory Divisions, NIST Laboratories and universities. The incumbent also will be responsible for budget planning and control, development of other agency and private sector funding, solvency management for the Division, and formulation of budget initiative proposals. In addition, the incumbent will be responsible for personnel management, including staff supervision, laboratory and office safety, recruitment, performance management, pay-for-performance, succession planning, and leadership and employee development.


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Basic Requirements for ZP-0801-V, Supervisory Research Engineer:

(1) Degree: professional engineering. To be acceptable, the curriculum must: (1) be in a school of engineering with at least one curriculum accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) as a professional engineering curriculum; or (2) include differential and integral calculus and courses (more advanced than first-year physics and chemistry) in five of the following seven areas of engineering science or physics: (a) statics, dynamics; (b) strength of materials (stress-strain relationships); (c) fluid mechanics, hydraulics; (d) thermodynamics; (e) electrical fields and circuits; (f) nature and properties of materials (relating particle and aggregate structure to properties); and (g) any other comparable area of fundamental engineering science or physics, such as optics, heat transfer, soil mechanics, or electronics.


(2) Combination of education and experience -- college-level education, training, and/or technical experience that furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying professional engineering, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the engineering sciences and techniques and their applications to one of the branches of engineering. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by one of the following: 

(1) Professional registration -- Current registration as a professional engineer by any State, the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico. Absent other means of qualifying under this standard, those applicants who achieved such registration by means other than written test (e.g., State grandfather or eminence provisions) are eligible only for positions that are within or closely related to the specialty field of their registration. For example, an applicant who attains registration through a State Board's eminence provision as a manufacturing engineer typically would be rated eligible only for manufacturing engineering positions.

(2) Written Test -- Evidence of having succesfully passed the Engineer-in-Training (EIT) examination, or the written test required for professional registration, which is administered by the Boards of Engineering Examiners in the various States, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico.

Applicants who have passed the EIT examination and have completed all the requirements for either (a) a bachelor's degree in engineering technology (BET) from an accredited college of university that included 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences, or (b) a BET from a program accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) may be rated eligible for certain engineering positions at GS-5. Eligibility is limited to positions that are within or closely related to the specialty field of the engineering technology program. Applicants for positions that involve highly technical research, development, or similar functions requiring an advanced level of competence in basic science must meet the basic requirements in paragraph A.

Because of the diversity in kind and quality of BET programs, graduates of other BET programs are required to complete at least 1 year of additional education or highly technical work experience of such nature as to provide reasonable assurance of the possession of the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for professional engineering competence. The adequacy of this background must be demonstrated by passing the EIT examination.

(3) Specified academic courses -- Successful completion of at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences and in engineering that included the courses specified in the basic requirements. The courses must be fully acceptable toward meeting the requirements of a professional engineering curriculum as described in paragraph A.

(4) Related curriculum -- Successful completion of a curriculum leading to a bachelor's degree in engineering technology or in an appropriate professional field, e.g., physics, chemistry, architecture, computer science, mathematics, hydrology, or geology, may be accepted in lieu of a degree in engineering, provided the applicant has had at least 1 year of professional engineering experience acquired under professional engineering supervision and guidance. Ordinarily there should be either an established plan of intensive training to develop professional engineering competence, or several years of prior professional engineering-type experience, e.g., in interdisciplinary positions. (The above examples of related curricula are not all-inclusive.)

Note: An applicant who meets the basic requirements as specified in A or B above may qualify for positions in any branch of engineering unless selective factors indicate otherwise, or unless he/she qualifies under the provisions of B.2 related to the EIT examination or BET degree.


Basic Requirements for ZP-1301-V, Supervisory Physical Scientist:

(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.


In addition to the basic requirements, applicants must have 52 weeks of specialized experience, equivalent to GS-14 (ZP-IV for NIST),  in planning, managing, and leading complex interdisciplinary research and development programs and organizations.

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:

This position has an education requirement. You must submit a copy of your transcripts to document that you have met the education requirement. Unofficial transcripts will be accepted in the application package. Official transcripts will be required prior to a final offer of employment. Special Instructions for Foreign Education: Qualifying education from colleges and universities in foreign countries must be evaluated in terms of equivalency to that acquired in U.S. colleges and universities. Applicants educated in whole or in part in foreign countries must submit sufficient evidence, including transcripts, to an accredited private organization for an equivalency evaluation of course work and degree. A listing of these accredited organizations can be found on the Department of Education's website - You must provide a copy of the letter containing the results of the equivalency evaluation with a course by course listing along with your application. Failure to provide such documentation when requested will result in lost consideration.

Applicants must meet requirements by the closing date of this announcement.


Applications will be evaluated against the basic qualifications. Qualified candidates will be considered in accordance with the Office of Personnel Management Direct Hire Guidelines. Veterans' Preference does not apply to the direct hire recruitment procedures. Selections made under this notice will be processed as new appointments to the civil service. You may not be considered for the position if any part of the application is incomplete. Your application may not receive appropriate consideration without the required supporting documentation. Falsifying your background, education, and/or experience is cause for not hiring you or adverse action after hiring.
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NIST offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, life insurance, health benefits, and participation in the Federal Employee Retirement System. NIST also offers a broad array of work-life flexibilities and services to employees such as flexible work schedules, teleworking transit subsidies, on-site child care, fitness center, credit union, employee assistants programs, and free parking. Learn more about NIST's work life programs by visiting The following web site is provided for your reference to explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees


This is a supervisory position. If not already served, the selectee will need to serve a one-year supervisory/managerial probationary period.

If selected by management, you may be required to complete a Declaration for Federal Employment (OF-306) to determine your suitability for federal employment and to authorize a background investigation.

If selected for this position, you will be required to complete an OGE-450, Confidential Financial Disclosure Report, prior to appointment.

This position is covered by an Alternative Personnel Management System (APMS). This system replaces the General Schedule (GS) pay plan and grades with career paths and pay bands. For more information regarding on how our pay bands correspond to the General Schedule grade levels, visit:  

Payment of relocation expenses is authorized.

At NIST we are striving to make the application process as easy and efficient as possible. With that in mind, the resume and corresponding responses of successful candidates may be shared with other selecting officials at NIST with opportunities like the one you are applying to. Additional selections may be made through this vacancy announcement.

The Department of Commerce provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate.  If you need reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the Human Resources Specialist identified in this vacancy. The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis. TTY users can contact Office of Workforce Management via the Federal Relay Service, 1-800-877-8339. 


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A complete application package includes the following: -Your resume AND -The supporting documentation required (click on Required Documents). You MUST apply on-line through WWW.USAJOBS.GOV. Your application must be received by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the closing date of this announcement. Uploaded resumes must include the following: applicant contact information and educational and professional background information including dates of employment and education, salary (and Federal grade level, if appropriate), and work schedule (i.e., FT/PT). Incomplete applications will not be considered and you will not be contacted to provide any missing information. If you do not have access to the internet: If you do not have internet access, please contact the HR Specialist identified for this vacancy for alternative application methods. Problems Completing Your Application: If you have problems completing your on-line application, including problems submitting your supporting documents, please contact the Help Desk by email at The help desk is available Monday - Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. ET.


What documents do I need to submit? In addition to your resume, you must submit any documents needed to support your qualifications for this position (i.e., college/university transcript). How do I submit my documents: You may submit required and/or supplemental documents through any ONE of the following methods: >Upload you file(s); >Download from your USAJOBS account; >Fax using the on-line fax cover sheet; >Mail your documents, ONLY IF YOU DO NOT HAVE INTERNET ACCESS; All required supporting documentation mentioned in this vacancy announcement, and all vacancy applications submitted electronically or via fax must be submitted and received by 11:59 pm ET on the closing date of this announcement. You are not required to submit official documents at this time; copies are sufficient. Are you CTAP or ICTAP Eligible? If you are a Federal employee claiming special priority selection rights under DOC's Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP) or your Agency's Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP), you must meet the threshold of "well qualified" for the position to receive priority consideration. DoC defines well qualified as receiving a overall score of "85". You must also submit proof that you meet the requirements of 5CFR 330.605 (a) for CTAP and 5 CFR 330.704 for ICTAP. This includes a copy of your agency's notice, a copy of your most recent Performance Rating and a copy of your most recent SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action, noting current position, grade level, and the duty location. Please annotate your application to reflect that you are applying as a CTAP or ICTAP eligible. For more information about CTAP and ICTAP, please refer to the following web sites: CTAP ICTAP


Jill Walther
Phone: 301-975-3030
Fax: 571-258-4052
Agency Information:
100 Bureau Drive
Gaithersburg, MD
Fax: 571-258-4052


If your application is referred to management for consideration, you may be contacted to interview for the position. You may be contacted by NIST upon consideration for employment to inform you of additional qualification requirements (i.e., selective factors) that would be required for a particular position.

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