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Agricultural Research Service Animal Caretaker in Ames, Iowa

Animal Caretaker

Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Overview
  • ##### Open & closing dates

11/06/2019 to 11/21/2019

  • ##### Service

Competitive

  • ##### Pay scale & grade

WG 6

  • ##### Salary

$19.08 to $22.25 per hour

  • ##### Appointment type

Permanent

  • ##### Work schedule

Full-Time

Location

-

Ames, IA many vacancies

Relocation expenses reimbursed

No

Telework eligible

No

- Duties
Summary

These positions are located in the United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Midwest Area, in Ames, Iowa.

The incumbent performs all duties including standard husbandry procedures, observing, feeding, watering, cleaning, sanitation and promotion of animal well-being related to the care and observation of various laboratory animals used in testing and training following established guidelines and instructions.

Learn more about this agency

Responsibilities
  • Provide animal care on a full time basis working with animals in confinement operations, biological containment, or research settings.
  • Cares for a variety of animal species, including but not limited to: traditional laboratory animals (hamsters, rabbits, guinea pigs, mice, and rats), domestic livestock (cattle, sheep, horses, goats, and pigs).
  • Cares for a variety of animal species, including but not limited to: aquatic species used in aquaculture, poultry (chickens, geese, and turkeys), exotic animals and alternative livestock (bison, deer, and elk) and wildlife (raccoons, mink).
  • Adheres to guidelines for the humane handling of animals to prevent injury to animals and/or personnel.
  • Assists in diagnostic and experimental procedures by capturing and restraining animals for treatment, examination, of specimen collection, both ante and postmortem.
  • Operates equipment such as euthanasia chambers, two-ton chain hoists on a rail system and hydraulic necropsy tables. Also, will operate forklifts, trucks and automobiles. May operate tractors with mounted or PTO driven equipment.
  • Operates, maintains, disinfects and fumigates isolation cages.
  • The cages and containment facilities are used to contain pathogen-free animals or animals infected with zoonotic (human pathogen) disease agents such as, but not limited to Avian Influenza, Exotic Newcastle Disease, Tuberculosis, Brucella and Rabies.
  • Reports to supervisor and the facility veterinarian any situations observed, such as temperatures and other pertinent clinical data which may endanger animal or personnel safety.
  • Collects blood and other body fluids, tissues or secretions, using techniques as prescribed by animal care and use protocols.
  • Treats injured or ill animals when appropriate by administering medications orally, topically, by inhalation, or parenterally (IM, SQ, or IV) upon instructions from the veterinarian, supervisor or investigator.
Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status

No

Promotion Potential

None

  • #### Job family (Series)

5048 Animal Caretaking

- Requirements
Conditions of Employment
  • You must be a US Citizen or US National
  • Males born after 12/31/1959 must be Selective Service registered or exempt
  • Subject to satisfactory adjudication of background investigation and/or fingerprint check
  • Successful completion of one-year probationary period, unless previously served.
  • Direct Deposit ? Per Public Law 104-134 all Federal employees are required to have federal payments made by direct deposit to their financial institution
  • Successfully pass the E-Verify employment verification check. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, visit E-Verify at https://www.e-verify.gov/
  • Incumbent must complete a limited background investigation (Personnel Suitability Level 2 (Moderate-Risk)) and a Department of Justice (DOJ) clearance for Select Agent usage.
Qualifications

In order to qualify for this position you must meet the following by the closing date of the vacancy announcement: 11/21/2019Qualifications will be determined under the Job Element Rating System X-118C, Qualifications Standard Handbook. While a specific length of time and experience is not required for most Wage Grade positions, you must show through experience and training that you possess the best qualified level of knowledge and skill necessary to perform the duties of this position. Qualification requirements emphasize the quality of experience, not necessarily the length. The responses to the questionnaire and your resume should be in significant detail to provide the person rating your application with a good understanding of your ability to do the job, technical knowledge, work, and training experience, etc. (For example You must have the ability to perform the duties of a, Animal Caretakerwithout more than normal supervision (Screen Out)). Applicants who do not meet the SCREEN OUT ELEMENT will not be given further consideration.

Physical Effort: The incumbent performs activities involved in the care, treatment, and observation of animals, and collection of biological specimens. Moderate to heavy physical exertion is required daily for restraining large animals and moving feed, hay, bedding, and equipment (up to 75 pounds). May be required to move large animal carcasses and/or portions of carcasses in carts weighing up to 300 pounds, with the assistance of handling equipment. May be required to stand on a ladder to complete overhead tasks, i.e. the cleaning and changing of filters. Stooping, bending, reaching, and active walking may also be required.

Working Conditions: Position is in a location that includes Biological Safety Level 2 and 3 biocontainment facilities. Works with animals infected with zoonotic diseases (human pathogens) such as but not limited to, Avian Influenza, and Exotic Newcastle Disease.The work is performed in Biological Safety Level 2 or 3 facilities. Because this is an exigency position, the incumbent is expected to report for duty when the lab is closed due to budget lapse, hazardous weather, heightened threat levels, or natural disasters. Work may involve discomforts such as having to spend long periods of time on concrete or slippery floors, exposure to bites, scratches, kicks, disagreeable odors, allergens, and animal wastes from diseased or distressed animals.The incumbent may be required to frequently wear personal protective equipment (PPE) such as masks or respirators, eye and ear protections, boots, gloves, and coveralls when providing care to animals that represent a potential source of zoonotic disease or other biohazard. Various forms of respiratory protection equipment mist be worn when working with certain infectious agents, chemicals, and animal allergens. PPE provides necessary protection against biological and chemical hazards, but may increase the risk of accidents due to decreased vision, hampered communication, limited mobility and dexterity. Physical well-being may be compromised by the prolonged usage of the PPW may lead to labored respiration, heat stress and dehydration.Work may be performed daily in the presence of hazardous chemicals such as formaldehyde, virucidal and bactericidal disinfectants, and detergents.

Additional Conditions of Employment: Incumbent may be required to receive extra vaccinations to work on specific projects, submit to blood tests, a tuberculosis skin test, and a respiratory/pulmonary function test.

Ability to pass a physical examination for the following: Ability to lift 75 lbs., with occasional lifts of 100 pounds and medical fitness to wear a respirator.

Respirator fit testing required.

Works on weekends, holidays, and occasional evenings, as required.

The incumbent escorts visitors in the laboratory area and/or works with high consequence pathogens.

Motor vehicle driver's license required. Special Agency Check (SAC) and full background investigation required for positions working with BSL-3 (or higher agents) or in BSL-3/BSL-4 facilities.

Education

This position does not have an education qualification requirement.

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.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Applications will be evaluated in accordance with Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) Delegated Examining Procedures and USDA policy using category rating. Applicants who meet basic minimum qualifications will be placed in one of three categories: Best Qualified, Well Qualified, or Qualified. Within these categories, applicants eligible for veteran's preference will receive selection priority over non-veterans. Category placement will be determined based on applicants' quality of experience and the extent they possess the following knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSA) or competencies:

  • Ability To Do The Work Of The Position Without More Than Normal Supervision
  • Ability to Interpret Instructions, specifications; other than blueprints
  • Ability To Use and Maintain Tools and Equipment
  • Dexterity And Safety
  • Knowledge of Materials
  • Technical Practices (theoretical, precise, artistic)

Your application, including the online Assessment Questionnaire, will be reviewed to determine if you meet (a) minimum qualification requirements and (b) the resume supports the answers provided to the job-specific questions. Your resume must clearly support your responses to all the questions addressing experience and education relevant to this position. Those determined to be in the best qualified category will be referred to the selecting official for consideration.

Note: If, after reviewing your resume and/or supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have inflated your qualifications and or experience, your score may be adjusted to more accurately reflect your abilities, or you may be found ineligible. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating. Providing inaccurate information on Federal documents could be grounds for non-selection or disciplinary action up to including removal from the Federal service.

Clicking the link below will present a preview of the application form; i.e. the online questionnaire. The application form link below will only provide a preview and does not initiate the application process. To initiate the online application process, click the "Apply" button to the right.

To view the application form, visit:https://apply.usastaffing.gov/ViewQuestionnaire/10644987

Background checks and security clearance
Security clearance

Other

Drug test required

No

Position sensitivity and risk

Non-sensitive (NS)/Low Risk

Trust determination process

Suitability/Fitness

- Required Documents

The following documents are required for your applicant package to be complete. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, your system failure, etc. Encrypted documents will not be accepted. Failure to submit required, legible documents may result in loss of consideration.

  • Resume that includes:1) personal information such as name, address, contact information; 2) education; 3) detailed work experience related to this position as described in the major duties including work schedule, hours worked per week, dates of employment; title, series, grade (if applicable); 4) other qualifications.
  • If claiming veteran's preference, you must submit a DD214, Certificate of Release from Active Duty, which shows dates of service and discharge under honorable conditions.If currently on active duty you must submit a certification of expected discharge or release from active duty service under honorable conditions not later than 120 days after the date the certification is submitted.Veteran's preference must be verified prior to appointment.Without this documentation, you will not receive veteran's preference and your application will be evaluated based on the material(s) submitted.
  • If claiming 10-point veteran's preference you must provide the DD214 or certification requirements (see above bullet), plus the proof of entitlement of this preference as listed on the SF-15 Application for 10-point Veterans' Preference. The SF-15 should be included but is not required. Failure to submit these documents could result in the determination that there is insufficient documentation to support your claim for 10-point preference. For more information on veterans' preference visit FEDSHIREVETS
  • Surplus or displaced employees eligible for CTAP, RPL, or ICTAP priority must provide: proof of eligibility (RIF separation notice, notice of proposed removal for declining a transfer of function or directed reassignment to another commuting area, notice of disability annuity termination), SF-50 documenting separation (as applicable), and your most recent SF-50 noting position, grade level, and duty location with your application per 5 CFR 330.
- Benefits

A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.

Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.

- How to Apply

Please read the entire announcement and all instructions before you begin. You must complete this application process and submit all required documents electronically by 11:59p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on the closing date of this announcement.

Applying online is highly encouraged. We are available to assist you during business hours (normally 8:00a.m. - 4:00p.m., Monday - Friday). If applying online poses a hardship, contact the Agency Contact listed below well before the closing date for an alternate method. All hardship application packages must be complete and submitted no later than noon ET on the closing date of the announcement in order to be entered into the system prior to its closing.

This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities on a case-by-case basis; contact the Agency Contact to request this.

To begin, click "Apply" and follow the instructions to complete the Assessment Questionnaire and attach your resume and all required documents.

NOTE: If a document is resubmitted, it replaces the previous submission, which means the previous document is no longer available to the Human Resources Office. If you are adding to, rather than replacing a previous submission, you must upload both the old document and the new document. You must verify that uploaded documents from USAJOBS transfer into the Agency's staffing system as there is a limitation to the number of documents that can be transferred. However, once in the Agency's staffing system, you will have the opportunity to upload additional documents. Applicants may combine all like required documents (e.g. SF-50s or veteran docs) into one or more files and scan for uploading into the application. Each file must not exceed 3MB. Grouping like documents into files will simplify the application process. Documents must be in one of the following formats: GIF, JPEG, JPG, PDF, PNG, RTF, or Word (DOC or DOCX). Uploaded documents may not require a password, digital signature, or other encryption to open.

Agency contact information
Stefanie Cruz
Phone

703-259-9373

Email

stefanie.cruz@usda.gov

Address

Agricultural Research Service 5601 Sunnyside Ave Beltsville, MD 20705 US

Learn more about this agency

Next steps

Your application will be reviewed to verify that you meet the eligibility and qualification requirements for the position prior to issuing referral lists to the selecting official. If further evaluation or interviews are required, you will be contacted. Log in to your USAJOBS to check your application status. We expect to make a final job offer approximately 40 days after the deadline for applications.

Multiple positions may be filled from this announcement.

- Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

  • Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) for federal employees & job applicants
Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.

Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:

  • An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Learn more about disability employment and reasonable accommodations or how to contact an agency.

Legal and regulatory guidance
  • Financial suitability
  • Social security number request
  • Privacy Act
  • Signature and false statements
  • Selective Service
  • New employee probationary period

This job originated on www.usajobs.gov. For the full announcement and to apply, visit www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/551094300. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.

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