Job Title: Principal Scientist, Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition – Washington, DC


Department: Department Of Agriculture

Agency: National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Job Announcement Number: NIFA:SL:10-10


$119,554.00 - $179,700.00 /year
Current/former SL employees may be reassigned, transferred or reinstated.


Thursday, November 18, 2010 to Monday, January 10, 2011




Full Time Permanent. 

 This position is also announced as a permanent position.  Announcement #NIFA:SL:10-11.  If you wish to be considered for the Term position please indicate it on your resume.




1 vacancy - Washington DC Metro Area, DC


Applications will be accepted from all qualified US citizens.


The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) is the Federal component of a nationwide extramural research, educational, and outreach system which supports the global, science-based agricultural enterprise and accomplishes its missions in partnership with land-grant universities and other academic and scientific organizations. To learn more about NIFA, please visit

'You are encouraged to read the entire announcement before you submit your application package. Your application may not get full consideration if you do not follow the instructions as outlined.'

This position is in the Senior Level (SL)-Career Reserved.  Positions in the SL are not graded.  Only one position to be filled under this announcement.  SL employees are also eligible for bonuses and awards based on performance.  Veteran's preference is applicable to the SL. 

The mission of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) in the Research, Education, and Economics (REE) mission area is to lead food and agriculture sciences to create a better future for the nation and the world.  NIFA is responsible for providing national leadership and support for cooperative science, extension, and education programs and other cooperative activities in the food, agricultural, and environmental sciences to meet major needs and challenges in food and agricultural system productivity; development of new food, fiber, and energy sources; agricultural energy use and production; sustainable natural resources use; promotion of the health and welfare of people; human nutrition; and international food and agriculture.



  • Address Mandatory Technical Qualifications
  • Specialized Experience
  • Protect you privacy ~ do NOT include your social security number.
  • Background and/or Security Investigation required.
  • Designated and/or Random Drug Testing required.
  • Agency Specific Requirements

Back to top


Additional Duty Location Info:


1 vacancy - Washington DC Metro Area, DC


The Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition is a major component of NIFA.  This Institute is responsible for research, education, and extension that leads to a safer food supply; improving health and nutrition of citizens and reducing childhood obesity; and improving food quality.  The Institute is co-led by the Assistant Director and the Principal Scientist with the incumbent providing the scientific leadership to programs assigned to the Institute.

The incumbent serves as Principal Scientist of the Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition, and is responsible for providing scientific leadership and direction of research, education, and extension programs to enhance the safety of America's food supply and development of nutritious and affordable food.  The incumbent serves as a principal scientific advisor to the Deputy Director for Food and Community Resources in evaluating, planning, directing and coordinating scientific activities related to the mission and function of NIFA.  The incumbent is instrumental in elevating the standing of agricultural sciences within the Federal science enterprise and provides scientific and technical input to the Director and Deputy Directors of NIFA.

The incumbent works closely with the Assistant Director of the Food Safety and Nutrition and provides the scientific direction for recommendations in programs and policies that are developed jointly with the Assistant Director.

Back to top

Qualifications and Evaluations



Each applicant must submit a comprehensive narrative statement that addresses the Mandatory Technical Qualifications outlined below.  The narrative statement must include clear and concise examples that describe the applicant's level of responsibility, scope and complexity of programs managed, program accomplishments, policy initiatives, and level of contacts. The narrative must not exceed 2 pages for each statement.

Failure to meet basic qualification requirements and to submit narratives for the Mandatory Technical Qualification factors will automatically disqualify an applicant.




(Fully described each statements as attachments with your applicantion package)

1.  Knowledge of scientific advances, opportunities and challenges in basic and applied biological, social and behavioral sciences influencing food safety and nutrition.

2.  Ability to develop an extensive scientific and educational network including experts from across a wide spectrum of universities, agencies, and organizations to inform and guide program development.

3.  Ability to solicit and synthesize both scientific and user input to research, education, and extension programs in food safety and nutrition programs.

Specialized Education:
Successful completion of a full 4‑year course of study leading to a bachelor's or higher degree from an accredited college or university with major study in (for SL-0401) biological sciences, agriculture, natural resource management, (for SL-0101) behavioral or social science, or allied disciplines pertinent to the work of the position to be filled; OR four years experience demonstrating an acquired knowledge and understanding which would have been obtained through completion of a 4‑year course described above. Ph.D. in one of the aforementioned disciplines is desirable.

Drug Testing:  You may subject to random drug testing for illegal drug use.

Background and/or Security Investigation Required

*With the recent concern and sensitivity regarding personal identification information, this is a request that you remove all social security numbers from applications and other submitted documents.




All required application materials will be reviewed to determine if applicants meet the mandatory qualification requirements. Qualification and experience determinations will be based only on the information supplied by the applicant.

The best-qualified candidates for this position will be distinguished from other applicants by reviewing application materials to determine the degree to which qualification requirements are met. Applicants should provide specific evidence of possession of the Mandatory Technical Qualifications.

Only the best-qualified candidates will be offered interviews.  Applicants may be requested to furnish in writing a list of individuals familiar with their qualifications for contact as references.  

Back to top

Benefits and Other Info


You may participate in the Federal Employees Health Benefits program, with costs shared with your employer. More info:

Life insurance coverage is provided. More info:

Long-Term Care Insurance is offered and carries into your retirement. More info:

New employees are automatically covered by the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS). If you are transferring from another agency and covered by CSRS, you may continue in this program. More info:

You will earn annual vacation leave. More info:

You will earn sick leave. More info:

You will be paid for federal holidays that fall within your regularly scheduled tour of duty. More info:

Tele-work / telecommuting may be made available after you have come on board. More info:

Alternative work schedule options are available.

If you use public transportation, part of your transportation costs may be subsidized. Our human resources office can provide additional information on how this program is run.

Qualified federal employees may be covered by our child care subsidy program or dependent care flexible spending account. Our human resources office can provide additional information on eligibility. More info:
You can use Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts for expenses that are tax-deductible, but not reimbursed by any other source, including out-of-pocket expenses and non-covered benefits under their FEHB plans. More Info:


The materials you send with your application will not be returned.

Send only those materials needed to evaluate your application. Please do not place your application in a notebook or binder or send pictures.

If you are selected and you have not previously completed a probationary period, you will be required to serve a one-year managerial probation period.

Before entering on duty, you will be required to complete a Confidential Financial Disclosure Report, SF-278. You will need to provide the information annually.

For further details, call the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) at 703-724-1850 or TDD 978-461-8404.  Select General Information on the Federal
Employment Policies and Procedures, and then Veteran's Preference and Special Appointing Authorities for Veterans.  Visit their VetGuide website at

Veterans Employment Opportunities Act of 1998 (VEOA):  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.

Creditable Service:
Service credit for annual leave accrual may be granted for directly related non-Federal work experience or uniformed service for newly appointed individuals, or those individuals reappointed after a break in service from civilian Federal employment of at least 90 calendar days.  The amount of non-Federal service to be credited will be based on the amount of directly related and documented experience that the selectee possesses as documented by the employee and which is approved by agency management.

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 that applicant meets the qualification standard and eligibility requirements for the position, meets minimum education and experience requirements, meets all selective factors where applicable and is able to satisfactorily perform the duties of the position upon entry.  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.  Please annotate your application to reflect that you are applying as a CTAP or ICTAP eligible.  Additional information on CTAP and ICTAP is available at

Relocation Expenses:
Payment of relocation expenses will be determined in accordance with P&P 412.5, Recruitment and Retention Incentives and Other Special Pay, Sections 6 and 7, as amended by Bulletins 03-402 and 05-412.5, which may be found at  See also

Financial Disclosure Requirement:
Federal employees are subject to prohibitions against officially dealing with
outside organizations in which they have a financial interest.   You may be required to submit a financial disclosure report if hired for this position.   

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.

Optional Form 306, (Declaration for Federal Employment):
If you are selected for this position, you will be required to complete this form before an offer may be made.

Selective Service System:
Males over age 18 who were born after December 31, 1959, must have registered with the Selective Service System (or have an exemption) to be eligible for Federal employment.

ARS Reasonable Accommodation Contact Information:
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).  

Back to top

How To Apply


You must submit your application so that it will be received by the closing date of the announcement.

1.  OF-612, Application for Federal Employment, OR resume that includes all specific information that your application must contain except your social security number (see 'Applying for a Federal Job: and forms at

2.  A narrative statement that addresses each of the Mandatory Technical Qualifications.

3.   If you are a current or former federal employee with reinstatement eligibility, you must submit a copy of your last Notification of Personnel Action (SF50) and a copy of your most recent Performance Appraisal.

Additional Information:

1.  This position is covered under the post-employment restriction of the Ethics in Government Act of 19078 (P.L. 95-521).  This Law also requires the selectee to file an Executive Personnel Financial Disclosure Report (Standard Form 278), within 30 days of appointment.

2.  Applications sent in U.S. Government postage-paid envelope and submitted through Federal Agency courier services will not be considered, however use of government e-mail systems and government fax machines is permitted if the agency states those systems may be used to send applications.  (Applications can be e-mailed to

3.  Male applicants born after December 31 1959, must be registered with the Selective Service System before they can be employed by an executive agency of the Federal government.  This requirement does not apply to Agency employees appointed before November 8, 1985.

4.  The 1993 Hatch Act Reform Amendments prohibit oral and written political recommendations for Federal jobs.


6.  Drug Testing:  You may be subject to random drug testing for illegal drug use.


Deborah Crump
Phone: 301-504-1448
Fax: 301-504-1535
TDD: 202-855-1234

Agency Information:
Department Of Agriculture
5601 Sunnyside Ave
Room 3-1146-B
Beltsville, MD 20705-5101
Fax: 301-504-1535


Applicants who meet the mandatory requirements in item A (Technical Qualifications), and B (Education Requirements) above will be considered qualified for this position.  Rating and ranking to determine 'best qualified' will be conducted by a panel of experts, and will be based upon consideration of the degree to which applicants meet the mandatory qualifications describe in A and B.  Interviews and qualification inquires may be required.  The  selectee are subject to prior approval by the Secretary of USDA.

Back to top

Agency Information:

Department Of Agriculture
5601 Sunnyside Ave
Room 3-1146-B
Beltsville, MD 20705-5101
Fax: 301-504-1535

Questions about this job:

Deborah Crump
Phone: 301-504-1448
Fax: 301-504-1535
TDD: 202-855-1234

Job Announcement Number:

Control Number: 1969469




Main Page

setstats            Copyright (C) All rights reserved under

            If you have any comments, please  send your email to