DEP-OPS ENVIRONMENTAL SPECIALIST I (Biology) - 37940179-Div of Env Asmnt & Restoration

State of Florida
Tallahassee, Florida, US
Jul 17, 2021
Aug 01, 2021
Biology, Restoration
Employment Type
Full time
Salary Type
Requisition No: 425583

Agency: Environmental Protection

Working Title: DEP-OPS ENVIRONMENTAL SPECIALIST I (Biology) - 37940179-Div of Env Asmnt & Restoration

Position Number: 37940179

Salary: $ 14.90 hourly (base for the position title)

Posting Closing Date: 07/30/2021

OPS Environmental Specialist I

State of Florida

Department of Environmental Protection

Our Organization and Mission:

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is the state's lead agency for environmental management and stewardship - protecting our air, water and land. The vision of DEP is to create strong community partnerships, safeguard Florida's natural resources and enhance its ecosystem.

The Work You Will Do:

This OPS Environmental Specialist I (37940179) position is in the Division of Environmental Assessment and Restoration's Algal Taxonomy group with primary responsibilities that include preparing and analyzing environmental samples for identification of dominant algal taxa and algal communities, analytical support to senior taxonomists, and providing leadership, and troubleshooting assistance to new technicians within the Biology Program. This work provides the department and other resource agencies with the highest quality laboratory services available.

The Difference You Will Make:

Water and natural resources are the foundation of Florida's communities, economy, and way of life. The Division of Environmental Assessment and Restoration (DEAR) is charged with protecting, maintaining, and improving the quality of waters across Florida that are a critical source of drinking water and natural habitat. DEAR team members work together to monitor and assess Florida's surface water and groundwater quality, develop strategies to reduce pollution, and work closely with local stakeholders to implement comprehensive restoration strategies that improve the lives of all Floridians and preserve aquatic resources for generations to come.

Some of the tasks DEAR team members get the opportunity to work on include:
  • Developing Florida's surface water quality standards;
  • Monitoring surface water and groundwater quality;
  • Assessing rivers, lakes, estuaries, and springs to identify pollution problems;
  • Working with stakeholders to implement programs that reduce pollutant loading into impaired waterbodies to achieve water quality restoration targets;
  • Provide the department and other resource agencies with the highest quality laboratory services available;
  • Manage water quality data repositories for data storage and use by the department, other agencies and the public;
  • Provide technical support to the department and the public regarding appropriate methods for water quality analysis and data quality assurance (QA).

How You Will Grow:

DEP encourages its leaders to constantly innovate and seek efficiencies. We believe in supporting and encouraging you as you take on important and often complex projects while offering you the opportunity to gain valuable experience quickly.

Where You Will Work:

The work location of this position is in Tallahassee (Leon County), Florida. The city hosts the Capital of Florida and seat of state government. The city is home to numerous parks offering outdoor activities, league sports and natural trails for running, hiking and biking. Tallahassee is located just 22 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, which is home to some of the world's top beaches. Florida State University, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee Community College and several smaller colleges in the region offer a hub for academic research, athletics, art, music and other student activities.

The Benefits of Working for the State of Florida:

Working for the State of Florida is more than a paycheck. The State's total compensation package for employees features a highly competitive set of employee benefits including:
  • Annual and Sick Leave benefits;
  • Nine paid holidays and one Personal Holiday each year;
  • State Group Insurance coverage options, including health, life, dental, vision, and other supplemental insurance options;
  • Retirement plan options, including employer contributions (For more information, please click;
  • Flexible Spending Accounts;
  • Tuition waivers;
  • And more!

For a more complete list of benefits, visit

Pay: $14.90 per month (hiring at the base)

Your Specific Responsibilities:

In carrying out the duties of this position, the incumbent is expected at all times to be aware of and abide by the Department's Standards of Conduct, as well as any and all departmental and/or work unit rules, directives, policies, procedures, and/or general orders applicable to performing the duties of this position.

Receives, preserves, and prepares algal samples for taxonomic identification; settles and prepares slide mounts of algal samples.

Performs algal taxonomic identification on phytoplankton and periphyton samples. Assists other taxonomists in correct, accurate identification of algal taxa. Participates in laboratory and taxonomic identification quality control (QC) procedures.

Enters, verifies, collates, and analyzes data using the Statewide Biological database, Laboratory Integrated Management System (LIMS), and other appropriate computer software. Assists in the preparation and review of documents, data tables, and graphs.

Performs field sampling, as required, including collection of chemical, physical, and biological water quality parameters, and using biological assessment techniques.

Participates in glassware cleaning. Ensures laboratory cleanliness. Participates in general laboratory maintenance tasks. Maintains adequate laboratory supplies.

Perform other duties as required.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
  • Knowledge of basic concepts, and techniques for aquatic biology, ecology, and environmental sciences.
  • Skill in using a compound, inverted compound, and/or dissecting microscope for analytical purposes.
  • Skill in the use of computers, including Microsoft Office software, internet resources, or other computer programs.
  • Ability to sit, stand, and use a microscope for long periods of time.
  • Ability to complete repetitive tasks accurately and efficiently.
  • Ability to determine workload priorities and ensure proper completion of work assignments.
  • Ability to accurately track, collect, record, review, and analyze scientific or technical data using Microsoft Office software, internet resources, laboratory information management systems, or other computer programs.
  • Ability to understand and follow technical instructions related to sample collection, testing and analysis, including Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and quality assurance and quality control procedures.
  • Ability to use laboratory personal protective equipment and work with acids, acetone, formalin, ethanol, and other chemicals.
  • Ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing.
  • Ability to follow verbal and written instructions.
  • Ability to think and work independently, and to work well in a group.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with others.
  • Ability to be adaptable, flexible, and resourceful in response to laboratory workload shifts.
  • Ability to work at desk and counter heights for long stretches of time with periods of frequent movement about the laboratory.
  • Ability to maintain a valid driver's license and travel.

  • Minimum Qualifications:

    Bachelor's degree in one of the natural, physical, or environmental sciences from an accredited university or college. An official transcript or diploma is required of the selected candidate to confirm qualifications for this position. Ability to travel and maintain a valid Driver's License.

    Preferred Qualifications:

    17. Knowledge of the terminology, principles and analytical techniques used to accurately identify algae to the lowest practical taxonomic level.

    DEP is committed to successfully recruiting and onboarding talented and skilled individuals into its workforce. We recognize the extensive training, experience, and transferrable skills that veterans and individuals with disabilities bring to the workforce. Veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to contact our recruiter for guidance and answers to questions through the following email addresses:

    The State of Florida is an Equal Opportunity Employer/Affirmative Action Employer, and does not tolerate discrimination or violence in the workplace.

    Candidates requiring a reasonable accommodation, as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act, must notify the agency hiring authority and/or People First Service Center (1-866-663-4735). Notification to the hiring authority must be made in advance to allow sufficient time to provide the accommodation.

    The State of Florida supports a Drug-Free workplace. All employees are subject to reasonable suspicion drug testing in accordance with Section 112.0455, F.S., Drug-Free Workplace Act.