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Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Biological Science Technician in Fort Collins, Colorado

Summary

The position is located at the National Wildlife Research Center (NWRC), Fort Collins, Colorado. You will serve as a Biological Science Technician in the Wildlife Genetics Project. The principal roles of the position will be primarily focused on laboratory practices associated with molecular ecology using micro-satellite and DNA sequencing as applicable to wildlife damage and wildlife disease management research.

Responsibilities

The duties described are for the full-performance level. At developmental grade levels, assignments will be of more limited scope, performed with less independence and limited complexity.

The duties may include, but are not limited to:

Participate in a wide variety of multi-disciplinary laboratory studies designed to investigate genetic variability among wildlife species.

Receive biological submissions for the Feral Swine Genetic Archive.

Extract and further process DNA from biological samples (environmental DNA [water], animal tissues, blood, and noninvasive samples such as saliva, hair, feces, etc.).

Analyze extracted DNA to quantify genetic variability.

Perform basic statistical analyses on genotype data for the description of population structure among wildlife populations and wildlife diseases.

Identify, analyze, and troubleshoot problems encountered with laboratory procedures.

Operate and maintain a broad range of laboratory equipment in a safe and orderly manner.

Participate in the preparation of scientific presentations.

Assist Project Leader and Biologist (supervisors) in designing and conducting laboratory and field genetic research on a variety of wildlife species and disease.

Requirements

Conditions of Employment

Qualifications

Applicants must meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements by the closing date of the announcement, including specialized experience and/or education, as defined below. FOR THE GS-07 LEVEL: Applicants must have one year of specialized experience (equivalent to the GS-06 grade level) that demonstrates: Ability to independently perform a variety of specialized technical laboratory procedures, including DNA extractions, PCR, qPCR, cycle sequencing, operating laboratory instruments including ABI genetic analyzers for DNA microsatellite genotyping and sequencing of samples. Next-generation sequencing library preparation experience. With minimal supervision, identify, analyze, and troubleshoot problems encountered with PCR amplification particularly focused on low quality/quantity DNA. Experience independently successfully amplifying various non-invasive DNA templates and interpreting results from them (must include fecal DNA and forensic materials). Experience with population genetic analyses. Experience with GeneMapper software for genotyping calls and subsequent use of genotypes for a wide range of analyses of population structure and population genetic statistics. Experience with optimizing multiplex PCRs, cycle sequencing, and sequence alignment. OR 1 full year of graduate level education with an emphasis in Evolutionary Biology; Ecology or Evolution OR Superior Academic Achievement: To qualify based on superior academic achievement, you must have completed the requirements for a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution AND must meet certain GPA requirements Equivalent combinations of education and experience are qualifying for this grade level. TRANSCRIPTS are required if: You are qualifying for the position based on education. You are qualifying for this position based on a combination of experience and education. This education must have been successfully completed and obtained from an accredited school, college, or university COMBINATION OF EDUCATION & EXPERIENCE AT THE GS-07 GRADE LEVEL: Applicants may have combinations of successfully completed education and specialized experience to meet total qualification requirements. The total percentages must equal at least 100 percent to qualify for that grade level. 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 and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

Education

Please see above for education qualification requirement information.

Additional Information

Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP), Reemployment Priority List (RPL), or Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP): Visit the OPM website for information on how to apply as a CTAP, RPL, or ICTAP eligible. To exercise selection priority for this vacancy, CTAP/RPL/ICTAP candidates must meet the basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors. CTAP/ICTAP candidates must be rated and determined to be well qualified (or above) based on an evaluation of the competencies listed in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. When assessed through a score-based category rating method, CTAP/ICTAP applicants must receive a rating of at least 85 out of a possible 100. First time hires to the federal government normally start at the lowest rate of the salary range for the grade selected. Travel, transportation, and relocation expenses will not be paid. Any travel, transportation, and relocation expense associated with reporting for duty will be the responsibility of the selected employee.

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