This job has expired

Foreign Service Engineer

Washington, D.C
Closing date
Oct 3, 2023

Infrastructure projects, overseen by the Agency's Professional Engineers, are guided by local knowledge, regulations, best practices, and context to create systems that are more easily operated and maintained by local entities and experts. Core duties consist of:
  • Assist in the planning, analysis, implementation and evaluation of USAID engineering and infrastructure projects in support of the full range of foreign assistance objectives (governing justly and democratically, investing in people, economic growth, peace and stability, and humanitarian assistance).
  • Manage U.S. Government resources, implementation teams, contractors and grantees to achieve specific program objectives and results consistent with overall U.S. domestic and international rules, regulations, policies and laws.
  • Serve as a technical resource to foreign assistance activities involving the project design and implementation of infrastructure and other construction projects. Support engineering and infrastructure activities by researching, reviewing and analyzing data, providing assistance and advice on engineering and infrastructure issues.
  • Assist in coordinating and managing strategies, policies, concepts, procedures, and guidelines for establishing infrastructure projects. Analyze technical constraints to engineering and infrastructure projects and recommend professional, sound courses of action.
  • Coordinate program development, implementation and performance monitoring plans. Support contracting activities for architecture and engineering, construction management and construction services and monitor progress to ensure compliance with design and contract specifications, safety, and environmental standards.
  • Coordinate assigned activities with other USAID Bureaus and Offices, the Department of State, other USG agencies, other Donors and governments, and the private sector.
  • Perform a variety of duties related to special projects involving program issues that contain complex elements. Assist in managing special cross-cutting initiatives and task force groups to accomplish programmatic goals. These groups may review specific programs at the organization or develop new initiatives in various program areas.
  • Provide technical guidance to several areas of emphasis within the overall portfolio, e.g. water and sanitation infrastructure, roads and transportation, energy, hospitals, clinics, schools, and other public facilities, housing, etc.
  • Provide cost estimates and determine project feasibility. Supports project management activities, direction of construction, operations and maintenance activities at project sites.
  • Assist in the preparation and presentation of engineering reports, such as bid requests, cost-benefit analyses, environmental impact statements, and feasibility studies.
  • Serve as a technical resource in developing programs and operational plans for national, regional, and/or local service delivery objectives.
  • Support policy reform efforts that include but are not limited to: operation and maintenance, utility management and administration, cost recovery and sector commercialization.
  • Throughout a Foreign Service career, assumes positions that entail supervision of one or more staff and management of a team or office. Supports professional development of staff, conducts annual evaluation reviews , and addresses any conduct or performance issues.
  • Act in a diplomatic, professional, and respectable manner as a U.S. Government representative in formal and informal settings.


Conditions of Employment

  • United States Citizenship is required.
  • Relevant education and experience (see Qualifications below).
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a Top Secret Security clearance.
  • Males born after 12/31/1959 must be registered with the Selective Service. If selected, the applicant must sign a statement certifying his registration, or the applicant must demonstrate exempt status under the Selective Service Law.
  • Must be between 18 and 59 years old at time of application, unless the applicant is a Veteran, who may qualify for hiring up to age 65.
  • Class 1 Medical Clearance (no identifiable medical condition that would limit assignment). A medical clearance or waiver is required prior to being hired for this position verifying that the applicant is able to serve at any USAID overseas post.
  • Worldwide availability is a requirement of the position. While USAID uses a bidding system for assignment requirements, Foreign Service Officers must be willing and available to accept assignments to any country where USAID operates.
  • Drug Testing. These are Testing Designated Positions under the Agency's approved Drug Free WorkPlace Program. All applicants selected for this position will be subject to random drug testing once they begin working for the Agency.
  • Must meet all requirements by the closing date of this announcement


This is a Foreign Service announcement. USAID's Foreign Services has a Reverse grading structure where the lower grades are the more senior grades, e.g., the grade 04 is the more senior grade than the grade 05.

Relevant overseas or diverse experience includes working and living: (1) in a foreign country, nation, territory, or tribe while supporting international development or (2) in an economically disadvantaged community in the United States working with members of historically disadvantaged groups. The applicant will need to demonstrate the overseas or diverse experience is relevant to the technical skills in the backstop, and must have been achieved after the completion of a bachelor's degree. Volunteer experience includes relevant unpaid as well as paid 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, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience, that meets the criteria as defined under "relevant work experience".

A well-qualified candidate will not necessarily meet the definition of highly or best qualified when evaluated against other candidates who apply for a particular position. In the absence of selective and quality ranking factors, selecting officials will document the job-related reason(s) for qualification determinations.

CTAP/ICTAP candidates will be referred to the selecting official if they are found well qualified. Well-qualified means an eligible employee who possesses the knowledge, skills, and abilities which clearly exceed the minimum requirements of the position. A well-qualified employee must meet the qualification and eligibility requirements of the position, including any medical qualifications, suitability, and minimum education and experience requirements, meet all selective factors (where applicable); meet quality ranking factors and are assigned to the Silver Category or higher Category; be physically qualified with reasonable accommodation to perform the essential duties of the position; meet any special qualifying U.S. OPM-approved conditions; AND be able to satisfactorily perform the duties of the position upon entry without additional training.

The skills and abilities described in USAID's Foreign Service/Senior Foreign Service Skills Framework are required of all foreign service officers and form the basis for the foreign service performance management and promotion systems. During the recruitment process, candidates are evaluated on the following skills which can be found in the Skills Framework:

Engineering Officers must demonstrate the following competencies:

Oral Communication: Expresses information to individuals or groups effectively and in a clear and concise manner, taking into account the audience and nature of the information (technical, sensitive, controversial); makes clear and convincing oral presentations; listens to others; attends to nonverbal clues; and responds appropriately.

Written Communication: Recognizes or uses correct English grammar, punctuation, and spelling; communicates information (for example, facts, ideas, or messages) in a succinct and organized manner; produces written information, which may include technical material, that is appropriate for the intended audience.

Teamwork and Interpersonal Skills: Encourages and facilitates cooperation, pride, trust, and group identity; fosters commitment and team spirit; works with others to achieve goals.

Project Management: Applies principles, methods, or tools for developing, scheduling, coordinating, monitoring, evaluating and managing projects and resources, including technical performance.

Technical Skills in Engineering: Knowledge of the concepts, principles, theories, and methods required to plan, design, construct, operate, and maintain built infrastructure such as buildings, transportation systems, water and sanitary systems, energy, and other types of projects.

Planning and Evaluating: Organizes work, sets priorities and determines resource requirements, and establishes short/log-term goals and strategies to achieve them; coordinates with other organizations or parts of the organization to accomplish goals, monitors progress and evaluates outcomes.


FS-05 Minimum Qualifications Required:
Applicants must meet one of the following three criteria:
(3) years of relevant work experience, including at least one (1) year overseas or in a diverse U.S. working environment AND having a Master's or Doctorate's Degree; OR
  • (3) years of relevant work experience, including at least one (1) year overseas or in a diverse U.S. working environment, AND having a Professional Engineer license (P.E.) along with a Bachelor's degree in architecture or engineering; OR
  • A Bachelor's degree in architecture or engineering, AND six (6) years of relevant work experience, including at least three (3) years overseas or in a diverse U.S. working environment.
If applicants have both a BS and MS degree, at least one must be in Engineering/Architecture.

FS-04 Minimum Qualifications Required:
Applicants must have either of the following three:
  • (4) years of relevant work experience, including at least (3) years overseas or in a diverse U.S. working environment AND having a Master's or Doctorate's Degree; OR
  • (4) years of relevant work experience, including at least (3) year overseas or in a diverse U.S. working environment AND having a Professional Engineer license (P.E.) AND Bachelor's degree in architecture or engineering; OR
  • A Bachelor's degree in architecture or engineering, AND seven (7) years of relevant experience, including at least four (4) years overseas or in a diverse U.S. work experience. If applicants have both a BS and MS degree, at least one must be in Engineering/Architecture.
If applicants have both a BS and MS degree, at least one must be in Engineering/ Architecture.

Additional information

Benefits and Allowances. USAID offers generous federal benefits that include health and life insurance; annual, sick and home leave; contributory government pension system ( Foreign Service Pension System ); Thrift Savings Plan (with agency matching funds), a student loan repayment program; and while serving overseas, government-provided housing, shipment of household effects, education allowances, country specific incentive pay and allowances, and other support.

Telework. USAID defines telework as a work flexibility arrangement in which an employee performs the duties of their position of record on-site as well as from an approved alternative worksite other than the location from which the employee would otherwise work, on an approved work schedule. During the initial training period in Washington which can last 12-24 months for most new employees, new foreign service officers will be allowed to telework a portion of each two week period if their training and supervised work arrangements allow and there is prior approval from their supervisor. There will be times when they must report in-person 100% of the time based on training and work requirements. This includes all language training at the Foreign Service Institute, and the initial Orientation in the first five weeks on the job. When assigned overseas, telework flexibility is determined by the policy for the U.S. Embassy in that country.

Medical Clearance. A medical clearance or waiver for the applicant is required prior to being hired for this position verifying that the applicant is able to serve at any USAID overseas post. Many USAID assignment locations are remote, unhealthy, or have limited medical support. Therefore, prior to being appointed to the Foreign Service, applicants must have a thorough medical examination and must be able to receive a medical clearance for worldwide availability or obtain a waiver of this requirement.

Foreign Language Proficiency is not required to apply and has no effect on whether or not you are selected for an interview. However, to reach required tenured status, you must be able to achieve minimum proficiency levels in a USAID tenuring language. Applicants who demonstrate proficiency in a USAID tenuring language will have an opportunity to test via phone for bonus points to be added to their interview score.

Minimum and Maximum Age at Appointment, and Mandatory Retirement Age Career appointments in the Foreign Service are covered by the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as amended which requires an applicant to be 18 years old at time of application and which directs mandatory retirement at age 65 (chapter 8, section 812). Given this mandatory retirement age and the fact that five years must be allowed to achieve tenure in the agency, Individuals must be appointed on or before their 60th birthday, unless the applicant is a preference-eligible veteran who may be hired up to age 65.

Direct Deposit Electronic Funds Transfer is required.

Moving/relocation expenses are authorized for individuals who are not currently living in the Washington, DC area and are not current federal employees with a duty location in the Washington D.C. area.

Applicants who previously applied for this position and were interviewed will not be invited for another interview within one year from the prior interview for the same position.

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