Soil Conservationist (District Conservationist)
* Duties Help Duties Summary The incumbent will serve as a Soil Conservationist assisting the District Conservationist in developing and carrying out a coordinated natural resources conservation program tailored to customers needs and meeting NRCS requirements. The incumbent provides technical assistance to local government bodies, tribal entities, state and Federal agencies, private landowners, and the general public in the development, application, and maintenance of a coordinated natural resources conservation program. Learn more about this agency Responsibilities * Works with farmers and other landowners to develop conventional conservation plans addressing resource concerns; provides information concerning Farm Bill and State Conservation Programs; and develops conservation contracts. * Understands all applicable NRCS and Farm Bill programs available to address resources concerns and explains cost-share programs and payment procedures to applicants and contract holders. * Conducts regular follow-up on all scheduled practices assigned; develops operation and maintenance agreements for all structural practices planned and contracted. * Performs annual contract reviews on all assigned contracts to ensure contract schedules are followed and that practices are being maintained according to NRCS standards and specifications. * Recommends practices to farmers and ranchers which help control erosion and conserve soil and water. * Fully utilizes computer and web-based programs in the documentation and management of conservation plans and technical assistance by the service center. Travel Required Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position. Supervisory status No Promotion Potential 11 * Job family (Series) 0457 Soil Conservation * Requirements Help 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/. * Must possess and maintain a valid state motor vehicle operator's license for the type of vehicle(s) operated to perform the duties of this position. * Incumbent is required to obtain Conservation Planning Level certification. Qualifications Applicants must meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements by the closing date of the announcement including time-in-grade restrictions, specialized experience and/or education, as defined below. Time in grade: Applicants must have one year of specialized experience at the next lower grade to be considered for the next higher grade (e.g. one year at the GS-07 grade level for consideration for the GS-09 grade level). Basic Education Requirement: Degree: soil conservation or related agricultural or natural resource discipline such as agronomy, soil science, forestry, agricultural education, or agricultural engineering. The study must have included 30 semester hours in a natural resource or agricultural field, including at least 12 semester hours in a combination of soils and crops or plant science. Of the 12 semester hours, a minimum of 3 semester hours must have been in soils and 3 semester hours in crops or plant science; OR Combination of Education and Experience: At least 30 semester hours in one or more of the disciplines as shown above, including at least 12 semester hours in a combination of soils and crops or plant science, plus appropriate experience or additional education comparable to a 4 year degree. Of the 12 semester hours, a minimum of 3 semester hours must have been in soils and 3 semester hours in crops or plant science. Evaluation of Education: Education that provided specialized knowledge and skills in soil and water conservation is more valuable than education that imparted broad but general knowledge and skills. Courses in soil fertility, soil chemistry, soil genesis, plant physiology, plant science, and field crops are examples of specialized courses that contribute towards meeting the required 12 semester hours as described above. Courses in the physical sciences or engineering such as geology, civil engineering, and hydrology also meet the soils, crops, or plant science course requirements where such courses included a complete introduction to the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soils. Evaluation of Experience: Experience that included the application of techniques, principles, and methods from a variety of agricultural and natural resource fields is appropriate, given the interdisciplinary character of the soil conservation occupation. For example, experience gained in a specialized field such as soil science, forestry, or agronomy is as fully acceptable as experience directly obtained in soil conservation work. In addition to meeting one of the Basic Requirements listed above, applicants must meet the following Minimum Qualifications Requirement in order to be considered: Specialized Experience: To qualify for the GS-9 grade level, you must possess at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-7 level or higher in the Federal service, or comparable experience not gained through federal service. This experience must include knowledge of the principles and theories of soil and water conservation and related sciences such as biology, agronomy, and forestry, in identifying conservation related problems. For this position, examples of specialized experience include: * Demonstrated experience developing conservation plans to treat natural resource concerns. * Implementing and following up with conservation practices. * Developing and managing conservation program contracts; OR Substitution of education in lieu of specialized experience for the GS-09 level: 2 year(s) of progressively higher level graduate educationleading to a Master's degree or Master's or equivalent graduate degree in soil conservation or related agricultural or natural resource discipline such as agronomy, soil science, forestry, agricultural education, or agricultural engineering. OR Combination of Education and Experience: A combination of graduate-level education and experience, as described above, may be used to qualify for this position. This combination must have equipped you with the necessary knowledge and/or experience to successfully perform the duties of this position. Combinations of experience and education must total at least 100% as outlined in OPM Qualifications policy. Specialized Experience for the GS-11 grade level: To qualify for the GS-11 level, you must possess at least one year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-09 level or higher in Federal service, or comparable experience not gained through Federal service. This experience must include: * Developing conservation plans that employ conventional and established criteria and techniques to interpret soil, water, and environmental data for sound land use; * Interpreting land use potential and deficiencies and advising partner agencies and organizations, landowners and users on natural resources conservation methods and techniques; * Resolving natural resource problems related to the implementation of soil and water conservation plans; and * Developing and implementing land treatment measures and water management practices. OR Substitution of education in lieu of specialized experience for the GS-11 level: 2 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a masters degree or masters or equivalent graduate degree in soil conservation or related agricultural or natural resource discipline such as agronomy, soil science, forestry, agricultural education, or agricultural engineering; OR Combination of Education and Experience: A combination of graduate-level education and experience, as described above, may be used to qualify for this position. This combination must have equipped you with the necessary knowledge and/or experience to successfully perform the duties of this position. Combinations of experience and education must total at least 100% as outlined in OPM Qualifications policy. For more information on the qualifications for this position, click here: https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/classification-qualifications/general-schedule-qualification-standards/#url=GS-PROFExperience 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 You must submit a copy of your college transcripts or a list of college courses with credit hours, dates completed, and grades received to verify all education requirements (i.e. substitution of education and/or basic education requirement). If a relevant course is not clearly qualifying (e.g. special topic, seminar, research, thesis, obscure or misleading course title, etc.), please submit an official course syllabi and/or detailed course description from the university/college for that particular course to ensure you are properly evaluated. Please note that qualifications determinations are based solely on the information submitted for each particular vacancy announcement. You must document all requirements on every vacancy; we cannot use previous determinations as a basis for rating. All required information must be received by the closing date of this announcement, and non-submission of all required documents/documentation will result in non-consideration. Unofficial transcripts will be accepted. This information must be received by the closing date of this announcement. Non-submission of these documents will result in non-consideration. Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Applicants must, therefore, only report attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants can verify accreditation via this link. All education claimed by applicants will be verified accordingly. Important: If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. Click on this link for more information.