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This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:  Physical Scientist (Program Director)
Agency:  National Science Foundation
Job Announcement Number:  AGS-2013-0009

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

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.
$105,211.00 to $163,957.00 / Per Year
Friday, May 17, 2013 to Friday, June 28, 2013
Full-time. - Permanent.
FEW vacancies in the following location:
Arlington, VA, USView Map
Applications will be accepted from US Citizens. Due to a recent change in Federal Appropriations Law, only Non-Citizens who are permanent US residents and actively seeking citizenship can be considered. Therefore, you are required to provide documentation that confirms you are actively seeking citizenship at the time you submit your application. Non-citizens who do not provide documentation will not be considered.


Applicants wishing to apply for a VSEE, IPA or Federal Temporary Appointment should see Job Announcement AGS-2013-0010.

Become a part of our mission to maintain and strengthen the vitality of the US science and engineering enterprise.  For over 60 years, the National Science Foundation (NSF) has remained the premier Federal agency supporting basic research at the frontiers of discovery across all fields, as well as science and engineering education at all levels.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences is seeking qualified candidates for the position of Program Director in the Physical and Dynamic Meteorology (PDM) program. We are specifically looking for a scientist with broad expertise in physical and dynamic meteorology involving numerical and field experience who could fill this position as soon as possible.

The mission of AGS is to extend intellectual frontiers in atmospheric and geospace sciences by making responsible investments in fundamental research, technology development, and education that enable discoveries, nurture a vibrant, diverse workforce, and help attain a prosperous and sustainable future.

AGS pursues its mission with the aid of Program Directors who exercise leadership across a range of scientific research expertise. 

The PDM program supports research involving research into: 1) cloud physics; atmospheric electricity; radiation; boundary layer and turbulence; 2) the initiation, growth, and propagation of gravity waves; 3) all aspects of mesoscale meteorological phenomena, including their morphological, thermodynamic, and kinematic structure; 4) the development of mesoscale systems and precipitation processes; 5) the transfer of energy between scales; and 6) the development of new techniques and devices for atmospheric measurements.

Service to the community as a PDM Program Director affords you substantial opportunities for professional and personal growth and executive experience by interacting with national and international researchers, and administrators involved in a broad range of research and education across the atmospheric and related sciences, helping guide the career development of individual scientists, and shaping the future direction of scientific research, globally.

More information about AGS and its programs can be found here. 


  • Background investigation.
  • Preview questions at bottom of Qualifications & Evaluations--see tab above


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Program Directors bear the primary responsibility for carrying out AGS’s mission by developing and managing a diverse portfolio of cutting-edge research projects, nurturing the early careers of scientists, facilitating the dissemination of scientific findings to policy makers and the broader public, and contributing to oversight of research activities and facilities at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).  They also lead grants programs involving cross-disciplinary and cross-NSF research and education activities.  For PDM, these include activities surrounding Frontiers in Earth System Dynamics (FESD) and Science, Engineering & Education for Sustainability activity (Hazard-SEES).

The Program Director is guided by the goals of NSF's Strategic Plan: (1) enable the United States to uphold a position of world leadership in all aspects of science, mathematics, and engineering, (2) promote the discovery, integration, dissemination, and employment of new knowledge in service to society, and (3) achieve excellence in U.S. science, mathematics, engineering, and technology education at all levels. The core strategies NSF staff employs include developing intellectual capital, strengthening the physical infrastructure, integrating research and education, and promoting partnerships.

The day-to-day activities of a PDM Program Director include, but are not limited to: 1) conducting quality and timely merit reviews of scientific proposals using a volunteer work force of ad hoc reviewers; 2) providing advice on NSF policies, regulations, and guidelines; 3) managing the merit review of a wide range of single-investigator and multi-investigator scientific projects involving numerical, theoretical, laboratory, or field-based activities; 4) evaluating proposed instrumentation/measurement systems supported within PDM as well as those within the Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) competition; 5) representing the NSF at federal agency meetings, programs, and committees; and 6) coordinating single-investigator, multi-investigator, and multi-platform field campaigns, including associated interactions with prospective and funded investigators, facility managers, and the NCAR Observing Facility Assessment Panel (OFAP).


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Applicants must have a Ph.D. or equivalent experience in physical or dynamic meteorology or a related field, plus six or more years of successful research, research administration, and/or managerial experience pertinent to the position.

The successful applicant requires not only knowledge in the appropriate scientific discipline but also a commitment to high scientific standards, considerable breadth of scientific interest and receptivity to new ideas.  Also necessary are a strong sense of fairness, good judgment, and a high degree of personal integrity and ethics, decisiveness, and an ability to effectively lead teams across a variety of institutional cultures within Federal and state government agencies, legislative bodies, and private sector organizations.

You will need to successfully complete a background security investigation before you can be appointed into this position.

You must meet eligibility and qualification requirements before 11:59 PM Eastern time on the closing date of the job announcement. You must answer all job-related questions in the NSF eRecruit questionnaire.

All online applicants must provide a valid email address. If your email address is inaccurate or your mailbox is full or blocked, you may not receive important communication that could affect your consideration for this position.


You will be evaluated on the extent and quality of your experience, expertise, education, and research activities relevant to the duties of the position.
We strongly encourage you to specifically address the Quality Ranking Factors below.  This will ensure that you receive full consideration in the evaluation process.

Quality Ranking Factors

  1. Ability to communicate effectively and work productively with the scientific community, peers, and co-workers at all levels to advocate program policies and plans and to fulfill NSF's mission.
  2. Ability to organize, implement and manage a proposal-driven grant program, allocating resources to meet a spectrum of goals, including ensuring integrity and consistency in the grant award/declination management process.
  3. Knowledge of management and organizational concepts, principles, practices and techniques with expertise in large project management and/or research administration.
  4. Ability to develop and manage cross-disciplinary research opportunities in addition to developing and evaluating education and training opportunities for undergraduates, graduate students, post-doctoral researchers.
  5. Experience with building coalitions with different elements of the Federal, academic and private sector research and education communities.
  6. Ability to provide the intellectual leadership to achieve results that significantly enhance the strength and potential of the national atmospheric and geospace science research community.

To preview questions please click here.


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AGREAT LOCATION!  The National Science Foundation is conveniently located one block from the Ballston Metro Station, a few blocks from Routes 66 and 50, and about three miles from downtown Washington.  Employees may rent parking spaces in the building garage.  There are many shops and restaurants within easy walking distance.  Employees receive the Federal benefits package and NSF offers:

•        Pre-tax parking
•        Public transportation subsidy
•        Child development center on site
•        Child care subsidy
•        Flexible working hours
•        Telecommuting
•        Physical fitness facility on site
•        NSF Federal Credit Union on site
•        Health services unit on site
•        Employee assistance program


If you do not have civil service status or reinstatement eligibility, you will not obtain civil service status if selected.

If you are currently in the competitive civil service, you will be required to waive competitive civil service rights if selected.

This Program Director position is in the bargaining unit.

Relocation expenses will be paid, contingent upon availability of funds.
For additional information on the NSF eRecruit system, please visit our NSF eRecruit Frequently Asked Questions


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Your application should be submitted online and must be completed and all required documents successfully faxed or uploaded before 11:59 PM Eastern time on the closing date. You must answer all of the job-related questions to ensure full consideration for this position. For more detailed information, please review our NSF eRecruit Frequently Asked Questions.

WARNING! Applications submitted online must have a valid email address. If your email address is inaccurate or your mailbox is full or blocked, you may not receive important communication that could affect your consideration for this position.

If you are unable to apply electronically, please use the Contact Information below for special instructions on how to submit your application materials. Hearing impaired individuals may call TDD (703) 292-5090 for assistance.



Non-Citizens who are permanent US residents and actively seeking citizenship are required to provide documentation that confirms you are actively seeking citizenship at the time you submit your application. Non-Citizens who do not provide documentation will not be considered.

You are strongly encouraged to submit information regarding relevant awards received in the previous five years; a current performance appraisal; and/or letters(s) of recommendation. Additionally, you are strongly encouraged to submit a supplemental statement that describes how your background relates to the Quality Ranking Factors listed in the Qualifications and Evaluation Requirements section of this announcement. This information will be used in the evaluation process.

You can fax or upload your letter of recommendation(s) or the individual(s) can email the letter of recommendation(s) to (Permanent) or (Rotator); please ask him/her to put your name and the job announcement number in the subject line.

Faxing Instructions: Please print out the appropriate fax coversheet(s) and follow the instructions carefully. All faxing must be completed before 11:59 PM Eastern time on the job announcement closing date. Please use extreme care in dialing the fax number to assure we receive your information. You will receive an email confirmation of receipt of your faxed document(s).

Transcripts are not required; however, please indicate the year that each degree was obtained on your application materials.

We also ask that you complete and submit the Applicant Survey Form. This will help NSF to ensure that our recruiting efforts are attracting a diverse candidate pool; it will be used for statistical purposes only.

All faxing/uploading must be completed before 11:59 PM Eastern time on the vacancy closing date. If you are faxing your information, please use extreme care in dialing the fax number to assure we receive your information.  You will receive an email confirmation of receipt of your faxed/uploaded document(s).


Johane Pace
Phone: 703-292-7493
Fax: 703-292-7478
TDD: 703-292-5090
Agency Information:
4201 Wilson Blvd
Room 315
Arlington, VA
Fax: 703-292-7478


Shortly after the announcement closes, you will be notified as to whether or not you meet the basic qualification requirements. If you do, you will receive further consideration and evaluation. If the position is in the bargaining unit, and your application is referred to the selecting official, you will be contacted for an interview. Interviews for positions not in the bargaining unit may be conducted at the discretion of the selecting official. All qualified applicants will receive final notification of the outcome of the job opportunity announcement.

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