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DHS Systems Engineer (recent graduates)

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This announcement is opened under the Pathways Program - Recent Graduates option. The Pathways Program offers opportunities to grow in your career through formal training and mentorship while earning valuable real-world experience. While the Pathways appointment is one year in length, individuals who successfully complete the program can be converted into either a time-limited or permanent appointment.

This position is located in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Under Secretary Management (USM); Office of the Chief Procurement Officer (OCPO), Washington, District of Columbia. The primary purpose of this position is to carry out developmental assignments in performing analyses and evaluations of limited systems engineering requirements of acquisitions such as information technology (IT) and Non-IT systems and equipment that supports systems engineering activities and operations throughout DHS. We are seeking intelligent and energetic candidates to participate in the Acquisition Professional Career Program.

Duties performed:
  • Assist with performing analyses and evaluations of straightforward systems engineering requirements of acquisitions
  • Assist with preparing systems engineering reports and related program documents that address technical acquisition system requirements
  • Participate in efforts to provide technical systems engineering assistance to implementing organizations and acquisitions
  • Assist in verifying engineering methods that allow for early detection of possible engineering failures


To qualify for this position, you must meet following Recent Graduate Eligibility, Basic Engineering Requirements, and Minimum Qualifications Requirement for the GS-07 level.

Pathways Recent Graduate Eligibility:Recent Graduates must have completed, within the previous two years, a qualifying associate's, bachelor's, master's, professional, doctorate, vocational or technical degree or certificate from a qualifying educational institution.--OR--As a veteran (as defined in 5 USC 2108), who, due to military service obligations, were precluded from applying to the Program during the two-year eligibility period described above. These individuals have a full two-year period of eligibility upon their release or discharge from active duty. In no event, however, may this eligibility period extend beyond six years from the date on which the individual completed their academic requirements.

Applicants must demonstrate that they meet the Basic AND Minimum Qualification requirements as noted below.

Basic Requirement: You must meet one of the items listed below (A or B):
A. Possess a Degree in Engineering. To be acceptable, the program must: (1) lead to a bachelor's degree in a school of engineering with at least one program accredited by ABET; or (2) include differential and integral calculus and courses (more advanced than first-year physics and chemistry) in five of the following seven areas of engineering science or physics: (a) statics, dynamics; (b) strength of materials (stress-strain relationships); (c) fluid mechanics, hydraulics; (d) thermodynamics; (e) electrical fields and circuits; (f) nature and properties of materials (relating particle and aggregate structure to properties); and (g) any other comparable area of fundamental engineering science or physics, such as optics, heat transfer, soil mechanics, or electronics.B. Have a combination of education and experience -- college-level education, training, and/or technical experience that furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying engineering, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the engineering sciences and techniques and their applications to one of the branches of engineering. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by one of the following: 1. Professional registration or licensure -- Current registration as an Engineer Intern (EI), Engineer in Training (EIT), or licensure as a Professional Engineer (PE) by any State, the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico. Absent other means of qualifying under this standard, those applicants who achieved such registration by means other than written test (e.g., State grandfather or eminence provisions) are eligible only for positions that are within or closely related to the specialty field of their registration. For example, an applicant who attains registration through a State Board's eminence provision as a manufacturing engineer typically would be rated eligible only for manufacturing engineering positions. 2. Written Test -- Evidence of having successfully passed the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination or any other written test required for professional registration by an engineering licensure board in the various States, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico. 3. Specified academic courses -- Successful completion of at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences and that included the courses specified in the basic requirements under paragraph A. The courses must be fully acceptable toward meeting the requirements of an engineering program as described in paragraph A. 4. Related curriculum -- Successful completion of a curriculum leading to a bachelor's degree in an appropriate scientific field, e.g., engineering technology, physics, chemistry, architecture, computer science, mathematics, hydrology, or geology, may be accepted in lieu of a bachelor's degree in engineering, provided the applicant has had at least 1 year of professional engineering experience acquired under professional engineering supervision and guidance. Ordinarily there should be either an established plan of intensive training to develop professional engineering competence, or several years of prior professional engineering-type experience, e.g., in interdisciplinary positions. (The above examples of related curricula are not all inclusive.)


Minimum Qualifications (must meet one of the following A-G)
A.You qualify for the GS-07 grade level you must have at least one year of specialized experience at or equivalent to the GS-5 grade level or pay band in the Federal service or equivalent experience in the private or public sector performing the following: 1) Utilizing various engineering techniques to achieve required work related goals; 2)Utilizing communications methods and techniques to maintain effective working relationship; 3) Analyzing problems related to systems engineering assignments and determining appropriate solutions; and 4) Preparing systems engineering reports and related program documentation that address system requirements and limitations.
B. I have an Engineering Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university AND meet Superior Academic Achievement (SAA) based on ONE of the following: 1. Class standing -- Applicants must be in the upper third of the graduating class in the college, university, or major subdivision, based on completed courses. 2. Grade-point average (G.P.A.) -- Applicants must have a grade-point average of 3.0 or higher out of a possible 4.0 ("B" or better) as recorded on their official transcript, or as computed based on 4 years of education, or as computed based on courses completed during the final 2 years of the curriculum; or 3.5 or higher out of a possible 4.0 ("B+" or better) based on the average of the required courses completed in the major field or the required courses in the major field completed during the final 2 years of the curriculum. (Grade-point averages are to be rounded to one decimal place. For example, 2.95 will round to 3.0 and 2.94 will round to 2.9.) 3. Election to membership in a national scholastic honor society -- Applicants can be considered eligible based on membership in one of the national scholastic honor societies. Membership in a freshman honor society cannot be used to meet the requirements of this provision.C. I have one full year of graduate level education from an accredited college or university in an engineering field that provided the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to do the work.D. I have an Engineering Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university plus 1 year of engineering technician experience equivalent to the GS-5 level or higher.E. I have completed a 5-year program of study of at least 160 semester hours leading to a Bachelor's degree in engineering from an accredited college or university.F. I have an Engineering Master's degree or higher degree from an accredited college or university.G. I have a combination of specialized experience and graduate education as described in "A" and "C" above, that when combined equals 100% of the qualification requirement