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Job Title: National Program Leader (Food Science and Technology)

Beltsville, MD

Department:Department Of Agriculture

Agency:Agricultural Research Service

Job Announcement Number:ARS-X13N-0013

Department:Department Of Agriculture

Agency:Agricultural Research Service

Job Announcement Number:ARS-X13N-0013


$123,758.00 to $155,500.00 / Per Year


Monday, January 07, 2013 to Tuesday, February 05, 2013




Full Time - Permanent




1 vacancy in the following location:
Beltsville, MD United StatesView



US Citizens, current and former status applicants, VEOA eligibles and persons eligible under special hiring authorities.


Find Solutions to Agricultural Problems that Affect Americans Every Day, From Field to Table

The USDA, Agricultural Research Service, Office of National Programs, Nutrition, Food Safety and Quality unit is seeking a National Program Leader to lead and coordinate the Agency's agricultural research programs relating to food science and technology in order to improve the healthfulness of the Nation's food supply.

The working title of this position is National Program Leader (Food Science & Technology); the official title of this position is: Interdisciplinary: Food Technologist/Plant Physiologist/Chemist/Agricultural Engineer.


·         You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this position

·         Suitable for Federal employment, determined by a background investigation

·         Males born after 12/31/59 must be registered with Selective Service





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· Leads and coordinates the national agricultural research program related to food science and technology, and establishes
the priorities, scope, and resource allocations for research on post-harvest food quality and processing as it relates to

food quality maintenance and functionality and to the improvement of human health.

· Plans and leads national customer and stakeholder workshops and planning conferences to discuss and develop the
Agency’s national research priorities in food science and technology.

· Works via matrix-management with line managers nationwide to ensure that the program implementation reflects the
national priorities, has acceptable timelines for action, and properly deploys human, physical, and financial resources.

· Establishes and maintains communication with ARS Research Leaders and non-ARS research organizations in the assigned
area to ensure that ARS research programs are kept scientifically up-to-date.

· Helps to establish research collaborations with universities and to develop public-private partnerships to facilitate
precompetitive research with industry. Works with the Office of Technology Transfer to facilitate the transfer of ARS

science and technologies.

· Evaluates ongoing research and assesses progress toward achieving ARS program plan objectives.

· Develops the Agency’s new budget initiatives for food science and technology research.

· Organizes and leads field program reviews to assess, validate, and determine the need for program redirections.

· Serves as the Agency’s technical expert in the area of food technology, food science, post-harvest physiology,
and chemistry, and advises REE and ARS administrators on related technical and policy issues, represents and speaks for

the Agency concerning relevant program areas, and services as Agency technical liaison between scientists, industry, and

action and regulatory government agencies.

· Maintains scientific knowledge, expertise and reputation in the scientific field(s) associated with food science and
technology, chemistry, and post-harvest physiology.

Other Considerations:

Frequent travel is required.





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Basic Requirements:

Food Technologist (1382): Degree: food technology, or dairy technology, microbiology, biology, chemistry, physics, or a related discipline or field of biological or physical science. The course work must have been comprised of at least 30 semester hours in the basic biological and physical sciences, and included at least 20 semester hours in food technology and closely related subjects, or 20 semester hours in subjects that can be applied directly to food technology, OR Combination of education and experience -- courses equivalent to a major, including the course work specified, as shown in A above, plus appropriate experience or additional education.

Plant Physiologist (0434): Degree: plant pathology; or a related scientific discipline that included at least 20 semester hours in basic botany or plant science, and 10 semester hours in plant pathology.

Chemist (1320): Degree: physical sciences, life sciences, or engineering that included 30 semester hours in chemistry, supplemented by course work in mathematics through differential and integral calculus, and at least 6 semester hours of physics, OR Combination of education and experience -- course work equivalent to a major as shown in A above, including at least 30 semester hours in chemistry, supplemented by mathematics through differential and integral calculus, and at least 6 semester hours of physics, plus appropriate experience or additional education.

Agricultural Engineer (0890): 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 of 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. OR a 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 Professional registration, Written Test (EIT or BET), Specified academic courses (at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences that included courses specified in basic requirements), or Related curriculum (successful completion leading to a bachelor's degree in engineering technology or in an appropriate professional field).

Additional Requirements:

GS-15: One year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-14 grade level in the Federal service.
Specialized Experience is experience directly related to the position to be filled. The specialized experience requirements for this position are:

1. Knowledge of theories, principles, concepts and methods of agricultural research programs relating to food science and technology, chemistry, engineering, post- harvest physiology, quality assessment, and/or sensory evaluation.

2. Skill in planning, coordinating and evaluating multidisciplinary research programs, and in conducting, interpreting and documenting research findings.

3. Ability to apply leadership and management principles to establish goals and priorities, and assess and assign resources required to accomplish programmatic goals.

4. Ability to develop, lead, and maintain cooperative research programs with other scientists, government agencies, colleges, universities, and professional societies and associations.

Applicants must address the specialized experience requirements in their resume (or application documents). Applications that do not reflect the specialized experience requirements will not be deemed qualified.

Supervisory/Managerial Competencies: -
In addition, the following KSAs will be used to evaluate candidates in the interview and selection process.

1. Ability to lead and accomplish work through others (i.e. team building, conflict management, cultural awareness, strategic thinking, technology management, and political savvy.)

2. Ability to communicate with individuals or groups from diverse backgrounds in a variety of situations.

This position has a positive education requirement. You must submit a copy of your academic transcripts OR a list of college courses with credit hours, dates completed, and grade point average or class ranking to verify education when applying for this position. If this information is not provided, your education may not be appropriately evaluated and you may lose consideration for this position. If you are selected for this position, you will have to provide an official copy of your transcripts prior to entering on duty.

Education completed outside of the United States must be deemed equivalent to that gained in conventional/accredited U.S. education programs to be acceptable for Federal employment. It is your responsibility to provide such evidence when applying. Please visit the Office of Personnel Management's website for additional information on this topic.

Time-in-grade restrictions apply for all candidates considered under Alternative Merit Promotion.

All qualification requirements must be met within 30 days of the closing date of this vacancy announcement.

Applicants must be available to report for duty at the time a selection is made. Selections are typically made within 30 days of the closing date of the announcement.


You will be evaluated to determine if you meet the basic and any additional requirements. The Agricultural Research Service uses a category rating process. Based on evaluation of all written materials submitted in application for the position, you will be determined to be Ineligible if you do not meet eligibility and/or minimum qualifications criteria; Eligible if you meet all eligibility and minimum qualifications criteria; OR Quality if you meet quality criteria in addition to eligibility and minimum qualifications criteria.





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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:


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 they meet basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors, and are rated in the Quality 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. Click here for additional information on CTAP and ICTAP.

If you are a veteran with preference eligibility and you are claiming 5-point veterans' preference, you must attach Member 4 copy of your DD-214. If you are claiming 10-point veterans' preference, you must attach an SF-15, Application for 10-Point Veterans' Preference plus the proof required by that form.

Qualified candidates eligible under the
Veterans Employment Opportunities Act (VEOA), a special hiring authority, will be considered. VEOA eligibles are preference eligibles or veterans who have been separated from the armed forces under honorable conditions after 3 years or more of active service. Veterans who are released under honorable conditions shortly before completing a 3-year tour are also eligible.

Status candidates who wish to be considered under both alternative merit promotion and non-status competitive examining must submit two complete applications when the position is open to both status and non-status candidates. When only one application is received, it will be considered under alternative merit promotion procedures.

Financial Disclosure Requirement: Federal employees are subject to prohibitions against officially dealing with outside organizations in which they have a financial interest. If hired for this position, you may be required to submit a financial disclosure report within 30 days of the effective date of your appointment and annually thereafter.

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: 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).





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Applications may be mailed, faxed, or e-mailed to the appropriate address and/or facsimile number listed below, but they must be received by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on TAG:Closing Date. Certain individuals are entitled to file a late application and must contact the Agency Contact listed below for details and application instructions.

Department of Agriculture

5601 Sunnyside Avenue, Stop 5151

Beltsville, MD 20705-5151


(301) 504-5998

If sending your application as an attachment to an email, do not send zipped files. They will be removed in accordance with standard electronic security procedures. If hand delivered, be sure your application is received in the Human Resources Division on or before closing date.


To ensure your application fully outlines your qualifications and eligibility for this position, please review the application package checklist at:

NOTE: Applications received in postage paid government envelopes will not be considered.


Keli Martin
Phone: (301)504-1584
TDD: 202-855-1234
Agency Information:
Agricultural Research Service

5601 Sunnyside Avenue

Beltsville, MD



You will be notified by mail once your application is received. After a review of your complete application is made, you will be notified or your rating and/or referral to the hiring official. If further evaluation or interviews are required you will be contacted.

Agency Information:

Agricultural Research Service
5601 Sunnyside Avenue

Beltsville, MD


Questions about this job:

Keli Martin
Phone: (301)504-1584
TDD: 202-855-1234

Job Announcement Number:


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