U.S. citizens: Hydologist (2 vacancies)

Spearfish, SD or Sundance, WY, , US

This position is temporary, has a Not-to-Exceed date and will be filled for up to 6 months. The appointment may also end early due to lack of work or funds.

This position is located within the Black Hills National Forest where the incumbent performs professional work in the field of hydrology. Incumbent has responsibility to conduct and interpret hydrologic surveys and analysis, watershed rehabilitation and management planning, and providing technical guidance within the framework of multiple-use management of forest and range lands. 

For additional information about the duties of this position, please contact Melissa A Dempsey at [email protected], (605) 443-3070 or Laniece Sawvell at [email protected], 605-642-4622. 

The USDA Forest Service has legislative authority to recruit and fill Permanent (Career/Career-Conditional), Temporary, and Term Appointments under the USDA Demonstration Project. Under this authority, any U.S. citizen may apply.


  1. Collects, analyzes, and interprets watershed data for input to environmental reports. Participates as a member of interdisciplinary teams working on land management planning, emergency burn rehabilitation, or other Forest projects. Follows prescribed project plans, applies conventional methods to analyze water samples and determine the causes of data anomalies. Evaluates the data, identifies trends and provides oral and written feedback on the results obtained. Prepares and carries out water quality monitoring programs, including preparation of plans, collection and analysis of samples, and interpretation of data. 
  2. Conducts water resource inventories following established procedures to assemble data bases required to support management programs and Forest planning. Surveys areas needing restoration or stabilization following disturbance by resource activities. Makes recommendations on treatment needs, estimates project costs, and prepares environmental analysis reports for restoration projects being considered for implementation. 
  3. Plans, conducts, and reports on assigned parts of hydrologic interpretive studies which typically adhere to established techniques and conventional methods of investigation. Collects and analyzes hydrologic data relating to one or more of the three disciplinary fields (ground-water, surface-water, quality-water), determining apparent reasons for data anomalies, and correlating the wide variety of factors that affect the information presented. Prepares reports of findings for assigned parts of interpretive studies summarizing the results of hydrologic investigations.
  4. Participates with higher level project hydrologists in the development of project proposals or descriptions, which summarize critical information relating to the objective, approach, funding, and expected results of proposed investigations.
  5. Position(s) may involve work away the official duty location to remote worksites within commuting distance (49 miles) and may also require overnight travel and/or camping per work assignment.

You must possess the Basic Requirements identified below to be considered eligible for this position. Transcripts must be provided for qualifications based on education. Your application or resume must clearly show that you possess the appropriate experience requirements.

  • Bachelors Degree: physical or natural science, or engineering that included at least 30 semester hours in any combination of courses in hydrology, the physical sciences, geophysics, chemistry, engineering science, soils, mathematics, aquatic biology, atmospheric science, meteorology, geology, oceanography, or the management or conservation of water resources. The course work must have included at least 6 semester hours in calculus (including both differential and integral calculus), and at least 6 semester hours in physics. Calculus and physics, as described above, are requirements for all grade levels. -OR

In addition to the basic requirements, the following additional education and/or experience are qualifying.

  • GS-09: (1) One year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-07 grade level.
    • Specialized experience is defined as: Assisting senior hydrologists by carrying out routine projects. Assisting in implementing well-established hydrology programs or projects. Responding to routine questions concerning water flow or circulation. Collecting and analyzing water samples. -OR-
  • Successful completion of 2 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a masters degree or masters or equivalent graduate degree, courses are to be related to the position to be filled. -OR-
  • A combination of education and experience listed above.

Required Documents
The following documents are required for your applicant package to be complete. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, illegible fax transmissions, delays in the mail service, 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. supervisor’s phone number and whether or not the supervisor may be contacted for a reference check;
  5. other qualifications.

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.