U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Student Trainee (Lock and Dam Operator) in Chicago, Illinois

  • Duties




Proof of Fall 2017 enrollment and/or Fall 2017 class schedule and all transcripts.

This is an excepted service, indefinite appointment.

About the Position:

Position(s) will be filled under the Department of the Army Pathways Intern Program. Click here for more information on Pathways program participation. The Department of the Army Pathways Interns may be converted to a permanent position within 120 days of successful completion of the program.

This intern position is designed to prepare a student trainee for employment after graduation. Interns will be assigned to one or more higher graded Lock and Dam Operator's who will assign tasks designed to increase familiarity with the target occupation, in a real world work environment.

  1. This opportunity follows a standard promotional path: After completion of Internship requirements, conversion to the entry-level for the target occupation maybe WY-05.
  2. The entry-level position will have a target full performance level, of WY-08. Progression from the entry-level to the full performance level for this occupation will depend on successful completion of all requirements for promotion.

See eligibility requirements for conversion to a permanent or term position in the "Other Information" section below.

Who May Apply:

Students who are eligible for participation in the Department of the Army Internship Program

Positions are open to current students pursuing a qualifying degree or certificate in an accredited, college (including 4-year colleges/universities, community colleges, and junior colleges); professional, technical, vocational, and trade school; advanced degree programs; or other qualifying educational institutions.

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As a Student Trainee (Lock and Dam Operator) for the U.S. Department of Army Corps of Engineers under the Pathways Internship Program, you will:

  • Work at a navigation facility within the Corps of Engineers Inland Marine Transportation System (IMTS) as part of a work-study program structured specifically for students in technical, vocational, or trade schools and is designed to provide exposure to essentially all aspects of work performed at the facility.
  • Work performed and observed includes operation and maintenance of electrically or hydraulically controlled lock gates, control valves, and related equipment such as dam gates, inclusive of manually operated wicket gates at sites where they exist, maintenance and repair of other site structures and facilities such as lock buildings and lighting systems, and grounds maintenance.
  • You will work under very close supervision and assignments are continually monitored to assure adequate training progress and safety of operation.

Screen Out Element:

This position has a screen out element which describes the minimum qualifications required. Your Occupational Questionnaire and resume must show that you have training, education, and/or experience that demonstrates your ability to be reliable and dependable, with shop aptitude and interest, as a Student Trainee (Lock and Dam Operator), WY-5401-03. An example of such is demonstrating reliability and dependability while performing basic maintenance or repair tasks utilizing basic hand tools such as hammers, saws, drills, pliers, screwdrivers, mowers, shovels, and rakes.

You will be evaluated on the basis of your level of competency (knowledge, skills, abilities) in the following job element areas:

  • Ability to Follow Directions in a Shop
  • Dexterity and Safety
  • Ability to Work as a Member of a Team

Physical effort:

Eye and hand coordination are required for operating various controls and handling lines while observing traffic and personnel, during maneuver boat equipment and wicket-hooking operations, and while performing other maintenance work. There is standing, stooping, bending, occasionally lifting in excess of 50 pounds, stretching, working in cramped positions, handling or maneuvering bulky items or equipment, and generally continuous moderate to arduous physical activity. Where applicable, strenuous muscular tasks are performed for short periods of time while raising and lowering wickets.

Working Conditions:

The preponderance of work is performed outside, subject to extreme of temperature and weather. There is exposure to injuries associated with working in restricted areas (occasionally in cramped and/or uncomfortable cold or hot areas), from falling objects, working with electrical power tools, wiring, hand tools, and falls while working on lock walls or other structures. The possibility of drowning exists as a result of falls while working around water, but the hazard is practically eliminated through observance of safety procedures, wearing of life jackets, and similar safety measures. Where applicable, wicket dam operations subject employee to exposure to hazards of working from maneuver boats, small skiffs, workboats, or others similar craft. During maintenance operations you will occasionally be exposed to unpleasant fumes, dust, etc.

Travel Required

Occasional travel - 10% for training and business travel

Supervisory status


Promotion Potential


Who May Apply
This job is open to…


Questions? This job is open to 1 group.

  • #### Job family (Series)

5401 Miscellaneous Industrial Equipment Operation

  • Requirements


Conditions of Employment

Other Requirements:

Click here for more information.

  • Male applicants born after December 31, 1959 must complete a Pre-Employment Certification Statement for Selective Service Registration.
  • You will be required to provide proof of U.S. Citizenship.
  • Trial/probationary period may be required.
  • Direct Deposit of Pay is Required.
  • Personnel security investigation required.
  • Must comply with Drug Abuse Testing Program requirements. This position is a Testing Designated Position (TDP) subject to applicant testing and random drug testing. Applicants tentatively selected for appointment to this position will participate in drug urinalysis testing, unless currently occupying a TDP within the Department of Defense. Tentatively selected applicants will be required to sign DA Form 5019 (Condition of Employment for Certain Civilian Positions Identified as Critical Under the Department of the Army Drug-Free Federal Workplace Program) requiring participation in random drug testing as a condition of employment. A job offer to an applicant who is a not a current employee will be withdrawn if the applicant refuses to be tested. Applicants with verified positive test results shall be refused employment. Applications from such individuals shall not be considered for employment for a period of 6 months from the date of the test results.
  • A medical examination is required. If selected, satisfactory completion of a medical examination is required before assignment to the position.
  • Position requires employee to wear a uniform and/or protective clothing.
  • Occasionally work may be performed on a rotating shift basis when it does not interfere with class schedule.
  • This is a Mission Essential position and is not subject to administrative dismissal in emergencies based on inclement weather conditions, or other emergency situations, as appropriate.
  • May be required to have an American Red Cross Standard First Aid card, CPR, and/or AED in good standing.
  • Must sign a Participant Agreement that sets forth the expectations for the internship.
  • Must be at least 18 years of age.
  • Must be within the commuting area of the location and/or locations selected.
  • Must be currently enrolled a minimum of half time and remain enrolled in a degree or certificate program.
  • Must currently have and maintain a cumulative and term grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 for the duration of the Pathways Internship.

The ideal candidate for this internship is enrolled in a degree or certificate program directly related to the following: electrical, plumbing, carpentry, landscape, welding, construction, automotive repair, maintenance technician, masonry, and machine mechanics or other areas as deemed appropriate and maintains a minimum cumulative and term GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Eligible candidates will be enrolled in a trades related degree or certificate program and maintains a minimum of 2.0 GPA.


This is a student internship opportunity. Your transcripts are a required part of your application. Additional information about transcripts is in this document.

Only degrees from an accredited college or university recognized by the Department of Education are acceptable to meet positive education requirements or to substitute education for experience. For additional information, please go to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and U.S. Department of Education websites at - http://www.opm.gov/qualifications and https://www.ed.gov/accreditation?src=rn.

Foreign education must be evaluated for U.S. equivalency in order to be considered for this position. Please include this information in your resume.

Additional information

Eligibility requirements for conversion to a permanent position. Interns must:

  • Be a U.S. Citizen
  • Complete at least 640 hours of work experience acquired through the Internship Program.
  • Complete their degree or certificate requirements.
  • Meet the Office of Personnel Management's qualification standard, including any applicable positive education requirement and/or selective placement factors and any other designated special qualifications requirements and conditions of employment (e.g. medical standards) appropriate for the specific competitive service position to which the Intern will be converted.
  • Successfully complete all the requirements of the Internship Program as defined in the agency-participant agreement.
  • Perform their job successfully as documented through performance evaluations and/or completion of an Individual Development Plan (IDP).

CAUTION FOR STUDENTS IN THEIR FINAL YEAR: You are required to complete 640 work hours concurrent with or prior to completion of your academic requirements in order to be eligible for conversion to a permanent or term position.

  • Multiple positions may be filled from this announcement.
  • Career Program 18
  • Salary includes applicable locality pay or Local market supplement.

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How You Will Be Evaluated

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

Your application package (resume, supporting documents, and responses to the questionnaire) will be reviewed to verify that you meet the basic eligibility and qualification requirements. Your responses to the questionnaire will be used to evaluate your relevant personal, educational, and work experiences. If you apply more than once or if you update your original application, only the most recently submitted resume will be considered.

It is the policy of the Government not to deny employment simply because an individual has been unemployed or has had financial difficulties that have arisen through no fault of the individual. Information about an individual's employment experience will be used only to determine the person's qualifications and to assess his or her relative level of knowledge, skills, and abilities. Although an individual's personal conduct may be relevant in any employment decision, including conduct during periods of unemployment or evidence of dishonesty in handling financial matters, financial difficulty that has arisen through no fault of the individual will generally not itself be the basis of an unfavorable suitability or fitness determination.

Basis for Rating: Qualified candidates will be assigned to one of three quality categories: Ideal, Strong, and Eligible. Veteran preference eligibles are listed ahead of non-preference eligibles within each quality category.

  • Ideal: This category will be used for those candidates who meet the definition of an ideal candidate as described above. Criteria include related major, grade point average, related coursework, participation in extra-curricular activities related to the target occupation, and related academic, paid, or volunteer experiences.
  • Strong: This category will be used for those candidates who meet many of the criteria described above for the ideal candidate.
  • Eligible: This category will be used for those candidates who meet the minimum qualifications of the position.

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Background checks and security clearance
Security clearance

Not Applicable

  • Required Documents


Required Documents

The documents you are required to submit vary based on whether or not you are eligible for preference in federal employment. A complete description of preference categories and the associated required documents is in the Applicant Checklist (External).

  • All applicants: Official or unofficial transcripts and Fall 2017 enrollment verification for high school, college (including 4-year colleges/universities, community colleges, and junior colleges); professional, technical, vocational, and trade school; advanced degree programs; or other qualifying educational institution pursuing a qualifying degree or certificate with their application. If you provide an unofficial transcript at the time of application and you are selected, you will be asked for official versions prior to appointment.
  • Applicants claiming Veterans Preference or Military Spouse preference (MSP): to verify your preference claim you MUST submit supporting documents with your application package.
  • If you are currently serving on active duty: You MUST submit a certification from the armed forces that certifies you are expected to be discharged or released from active duty service in the armed forces under honorable conditions not later than 120 days after the date you apply to this opportunity. If you supply a certification at this stage, your preference/eligibility will be verified prior to appointment. More information about Veteran's Preference is located on the Feds Hire Vets website. Please upload veteran's documents under the appropriate category.

If you fail to provide required documents, you will be marked as having an incomplete application package and will not be considered any further.

PLEASE NOTE: All documents submitted as part of the application package may be shared beyond the Human Resources Office. Some supplemental documents like military orders and marriage certificates may contain personal information for other than the applicant. You may protect the privacy of others by sanitizing (that is, marking through or over personally identifiable information such as a social security number) to remove such personal information before submitting the application. You may be asked to provide an un-sanitized version of the documents upon selection to confirm eligibility.

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

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. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

  • 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.

  • Benefits for federal employees
  • Healthcare insurance
  • Pay and leave

Department of the Army Pathways Interns receive many of the same benefits as permanent civil service employees. The Department of Defense offers excellent benefits programs some of which may include:

  • Comprehensive health and life insurance(length of employment and time in pay status conditions apply for interns)
  • Competitive salaries
  • Generous retirement programs (interns are eligible to participate in retirement programs after conversion to permanent or Term employment)
  • Paid holidays, sick leave, and vacation time
  • Flexible work environment
  • Paid employment-related training and education
  • Possible student loan repayment
  • Payment of licenses, certification, and academic degrees as applicable
  • Bonuses, incentives, and awards as appropriate for the job.

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


How to Apply

To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:

  1. Your resume: If you submit a resume with inappropriate material e.g. photos, you will not be considered for this vacancy. Your resume may be submitted in any format. For qualifications determinations your resume must contain hours worked per week and the dates of employment (i.e., HRS per week and month/year to month/year or month/year to present). Resumes that do not contain this information will be marked as insufficient and applicants may not receive consideration for this position.
  2. Your responses to the questionnaire.
  3. Your transcripts, proof of Fall 2017 enrollment.
  4. Additional required documents (see Required Documents section below) .

The complete Application Package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (EST) on Monday, September 25, 2017.

To begin the process, click the Apply Online button to create an account or log in to your existing USAJOBS account. Follow the prompts to complete the questionnaire. Please ensure you click the Submit My Answers button at the end of the process.

To fax supporting documents you are unable to upload, complete this cover page using the following Vacancy ID 2007209. Fax your documents to 1-478-757-3144.

If you cannot apply online, you will need to provide the same information obtained in the online process. You will need three documents to complete this process: the Occupational Questionnaire, the scan response form: U.S. Office of Personnel Management Occupational Questionnaire (OPM Form 1203-FX), and a separate document described in item #3 below.

  1. Download the scan response form, OPM Form 1203-FX
  2. View Occupational Questionnaire. Use this information to guide you in completing the OPM Form 1203-FX. Note that you may be instructed to leave some responses blank on the scan response form.
  3. On a separate document, please identify which position(s) on your resume (include title, organization, and employment dates) support any response of "E" ("I am considered an expert in performing this task....").
  4. Fax the completed OPM Form 1203-FX, along with your required and supporting documents, to 1-478-757-3144. Your OPM Form 1203-FX will serve as a cover page for your fax transmission.

PLEASE NOTE: The numbering on the OPM Form 1203-FX will not match the Occupational Questionnaire. Section 25 of the OPM Form 1203-FX continuously numbers from number one, while the Questionnaire starts each section of questions with number one. When entering your responses please continue regardless of number sequence. This issue has been identified and will be resolved as soon as possible.

It is your responsibility to verify that information entered, uploaded, or faxed (i.e., resume) is complete, accurate, and submitted by the closing date. Uploaded documents may take up to one hour to clear the virus scan. Faxed documents must be completely transmitted by 11:59p.m. Eastern Standard Time on the closing date of the announcement.

The Department of the Army provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the servicing civilian personnel unit. Requests for reasonable accommodations are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

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Agency contact information
Central Resume Processing Center





DA SWR USACE St Louis Please contact by email Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD

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Next steps

Once the application process is complete, a review of your application will be made to ensure you meet the program requirements. Your resume, transcripts, and other supporting documents will be reviewed and compared to your responses to the online questionnaire. Eligible applicants will be placed into the ideal, strong, and eligible categories.

Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating.

To check the status of your application or return to a previous or incomplete application, log into your USAJOBS account, select My Applications, and click on the more information link under the application status for this position.

For questions regarding the status of your application, eligibility or qualifications determination contact: USARMY.APG.CHRA-NE.MBX.APPLICANTHELP@MAIL.MIL

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  • Fair & Transparent
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) office at OPM
  • Office of Equal Opportunity

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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 and hiring process 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.

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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/478772800. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.

Open & closing dates: 09/14/2017 to 09/25/2017

Salary: $18.82 to $21.96 per hour

Pay scale & grade: WY 03

Work schedule: Multiple Schedules

Appointment type: Internships