Director, Materials Sciences and Engineering Division

Germantown, Maryland
Oct 15, 2021
Oct 19, 2021
Executive, Director
Full Time


The Materials Sciences and Engineering Division supports basic research for the discovery and design of new materials with novel properties and functions. This research creates a foundation for the development of new and improved materials for the generation, storage, conversion, and use of energy as well as for other applications.
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As the Director, Materials Sciences and Engineering Division you will:
  • Provide leadership and direction in establishing vision, strategic plans, goals, and objectives for the research activities supported.
  • Plan, develop, and implement vital, productive, forefront research programs conducted in Department of Energy (DOE) laboratories, universities, and other public and private institutions.
  • Maintain awareness of international progress and directions in materials sciences and engineering as a basis for establishing world-leading research portfolios.
  • Assure adequate financing for the activities in the area of responsibility, sets priorities for activities, and apportions available funding among them. Develop budget requests and manage the budget in accordance with prescribed practices set forth by the organization and the DOE.
  • Review and make final approvals on staff recommendations concerning research agreements and individual proposals for research projects.
  • Implement rigorous merit evaluation using independent peer review for all new and ongoing activities supported in accordance with the requirements identified in the Code of Federal Regulations for the grant program and published guidelines for the DOE laboratory programs and facilities.
  • Advise and assist the head of the office in the formulations and management of new programs and policies. Respond to policy questions, resolve management problems, and keep the head of the organization informed of the progress and prospects of activities in the area of responsibility.
  • Maintain strong, collegial relations with other programs within the office, the organization, DOE field offices, DOE laboratories, academic and other institutions both domestic and foreign, and the broad scientific community. Also maintain strong, collegial relations with the DOE technology offices and assesses the relevance of research activities to the missions of the DOE as well as the broad national energy agenda. Coordinate research activities with those of other Federal agencies that play roles in the support of materials sciences and engineering.
  • Represent the division, the office, the organization, and the DOE in matters pertaining to the portfolio of the division to professional societies, coordinating committees, task forces, and various other entities, including national and international entities.
  • Ensure that all activities are performed in a safe and environmentally conscientious manner by staff at DOE headquarters and by researchers and activities supported by the resources in the area of responsibility.

Travel Required

Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT FOR THIS VACANCY: This is a career position in the SES. Unless the selectee is already a member of the SES with career status or has successfully completed an SES Candidate Development Program certified by OPM, executive qualifications must be approved by OPM before the appointment can be effected. If you are selected, you will be responsible for working with a DOE Executive Consultant to finalize your ECQ narrative for OPM submission.

CITIZENSHIP: You must be a U.S. Citizen or National.

HOMELAND SECURITY PRESIDENTIAL DIRECTIVE (HSPD-12): A selectee's appointment is contingent upon compliance with Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD-12) governing personal identity.

PUBLIC FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE REPORT (OGE 278): If you are selected for this position, will be required to file this report prior to entry on duty in accordance with the Ethics of Government Act of 1978.

PROBATIONARY PERIOD: An individual's initial SES career appointment becomes final only after the individual successfully completes a one-year probationary period.

SECURITY CLEARANCE: You must be able to obtain and maintain a DOE Q-level security clearance

DRUG TESTING: As a condition of appointment to this position, you will be subject to pre-employment/pre-appointment testing for illegal drug use under the U.S. Department of Energy Employee Drug Plan. If you are selected you will be provided information regarding drug testing. Failure to undergo testing or positive findings resulting from the test will eliminate you from further consideration for this position. If selected for and appointed to this position you will be subject to random drug testing while employed.

SELECTIVE SERVICE: All males born after December 31, 1959 must abide by laws regarding Selective Service registration. To learn more about this law, visit the Selective Service web page, Who Must Register . If you are not registered and don't have an approved exemption, you will not be eligible for employment with the Federal government.

MOBILITY: A mobility agreement may be required based on mission needs.

E-VERIFY: New employees to the Department of Energy will be required to successfully pass the E-Verify employment verification check. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, visit .


Resume-Based Resume: Applicants must show possession of the ECQs and any technical qualifications via resume. Your resume presented will reflect that you possess the ECQs and give a synopsis of your accomplishments.

The application process used to recruit for this position is the RESUME BASED method. Although applicants cannot address the Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs) separately, evidence of each must be clearly demonstrated in the five (5) page resume and throughout the rest of the application package to include the MTQ narrative.

A sample 5-page executive level resume and ECQ narratives can be viewed at this link

Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs)

ECQ 1: LEADING CHANGE: Ability to bring about strategic change, both within and outside the organization, to meet organizational goals and establish an organizational vision and to implement it in a continuously changing environment.

ECQ 2: LEADING PEOPLE: Ability to lead people toward meeting the organization's vision, mission, and goals and provide an inclusive workplace that fosters the development of others, facilitates cooperation and teamwork, and supports constructive resolution of conflicts.

ECQ 3: RESULTS DRIVEN: Ability to meet organizational goals and customer expectations, and make decisions that produce high-quality results by applying technical knowledge, analyzing problems, and calculating risks.

ECQ 4: BUSINESS ACUMEN: Ability to manage human, financial, and information resources strategically.

ECQ 5: BUILDING COALITIONS: Ability to build coalitions internally and with other Federal agencies, State and local governments, nonprofit and private sector organizations, foreign governments, or international organizations to achieve common goals.

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is required by law to review the executive core qualifications of each new career appointee to the Senior Executive Service (SES) prior to appointment. For additional information on ECQs, please review the detailed information provided by OPM at the following link: Executive Core Qualifications .

Mandatory Technical Qualifications (MTQs): A supplemental narrative must be uploaded and attached to your application addressing each MTQ listed below . No more than one (1) page per MTQ is allowed; additional informational information will not be considered. MTQs must provide specific examples that address relevant experience and accomplishments. Applicants must reflect superior technical qualifications demonstrated through leadership and management in the following MTQs:
MTQ 1: Demonstrate knowledge of and experience in materials sciences which can include a background in condensed matter physics; physical behavior of materials; materials focused x-ray, neutron, or electron scattering research; and/or materials chemistry, synthesis, and processing research sufficient to serve as a technical expert and principal advisor for the division in the area of materials sciences and engineering. This is based on formal training, extensive personal research, and work experience.

MTQ 2: Demonstrate capabilities in scientific and technical leadership and in the management of scientific research programs including large teams and multi-institutional collaborations.

MTQ 3: Demonstrate knowledge, understanding, and strategic implementation of new/emerging fields of science related to materials sciences that could enhance/support overall domestic research in materials sciences and advance its role in new/emerging fields of science relevant to clean energy, climate research, quantum information science, artificial intelligence/machine learning, microelectronics, and/or other related national priorities.

As required by Executive Order 14043, Federal employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 regardless of the employee's duty location or work arrangement (e.g., telework, remote work), subject to such exceptions as required by law. If you are selected for this position, you will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by November 22, 2021, or prior to onboarding, if hired after November 22, unless you request a legally required exception from this requirement.
As part of onboarding, you will need to submit DOE's Certification of COVID-19 Vaccination for Prospective Federal Employees attesting to truthfulness that you are fully vaccinated by November 22, 2021, or prior to onboarding, if hired after November 22, 2021. Once onboard, you will then be required to provide proof of vaccination in DOE's MyEnergy system and certify the documentation you provide is true and correct under penalty of perjury. Providing a knowing and willful false statement on either DOE's COVID-19 Vaccination Form prior to starting or when providing proof of vaccination in DOE's MyEnergy system once onboard is punishable by fine and/or imprisonment (18 U.S.C. 1001) and will result in termination from Federal service.


General Physical Science Series, 1301

Individual Occupational Requirements

Basic Requirements:
  • Degree: physical science, engineering, or mathematics that included 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science such as mechanics, dynamics, properties of materials, and electronics.
  • Combination of education and experience -- education equivalent to one of the majors shown in A above that included at least 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science, plus appropriate experience or additional education.
  • You must provide a copy of your transcripts from an accredited institution. Be sure to include those transcripts directly applicable to determining your meeting the education requirements. Failure to provide proof of education will result in non-consideration for this position. OFFICIAL ORIGINAL TRANSCRIPTS will be required to be provided prior to entrance-on-duty for individuals selected.

    Education must be obtained from an accredited institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. For special instructions pertaining to foreign education and a list of organizations that can evaluate foreign education, see Department of Education

    Additional information

    • The U.S. Department of Energy fosters a diverse and inclusive workplace and is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
    • For general information on government-wide Telework polices visit:
    • OF-306: You may be required to complete an OF-306, "Declaration for Federal Employment" form used to (a) determine your suitability for Federal Employment and/or (b) in conducting an investigation to determine your suitability or ability to hold a security clearance.
    • Applications contain information subject to the Privacy Act (PL 93 579, 5 USC 552a). The information is used to determine qualifications for employment and is authorized under Title 5, USC, Section 3302 and 3361.

    How You Will Be Evaluated

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

    You will be evaluated on the quality and extent of your total accomplishments, experience, and education (if applicable). Your application will be rated and ranked by an Executive Resources Board (ERB) Panel, comprised of at least three SES members, using only the information submitted within the application package. Applicants who do not demonstrate in their application sufficient possession of the ECQs & MTQs will be determined ineligible for further consideration.

    As part of the Resume Based recruitment method, the ERB Panel conducts a structured interview for all applicants, both competitive and non-competitive, who are determined to be in the top category from the ERB Rating Panel. Based on the Panel's evaluation, applicants who are determined Best Qualified will be referred to the selecting official for further consideration.

    Veteran's Preference does not apply to the Senior Executive Service (SES).

    Once a candidate has been identified for selection, reference checks may be completed. The Department's appointing official(s) will make a final approval of the selection, and in competitive cases, OPM's Qualifications Review Board (QRB) must certify the ECQs before final appointment can occur. If OPM approval is required for the ECQs, the candidate is required to assist in the development of the QRB template for submission to the QRB. Verification of performance, suitability and security information from reference checks will be taken into consideration when making offers of employment.

    Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance
    Q Access Authorization

    Drug test required

    Position sensitivity and risk
    Critical-Sensitive (CS)/High Risk

    Trust determination process
    Credentialing , Suitability/Fitness

    Required Documents

    Please carefully review the following list to determine what documentation you need to submit. Some documents may not apply to all applicants. If you fail to submit required documentation before the announcement closes, you will be rated "ineligible."

    You must submit:

    1. ALL APPLICANTS - Five (5) page ECQ-based Resume including the following:

    -Full name, mailing and email addresses, day & evening telephone numbers

    -Education information including:

    --Name, city, state of colleges/universities attended, major & type of degree received.

    --Report only schools accredited by the accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education

    -All work experience (paid and unpaid) including:

    -Job title, duties/accomplishments, employer's name/address, start/end dates (include month, day, and year), average hours per week worked, salary

    -Honors, awards, special accomplishments

    2. ALL APPLICANTS - MTQ Narrative (no more than one page per MTQ, 10 pt font).

    3. Current or former career SES members must provide a SES appointment SF-50 (Notification of Personnel Action), and an SF-50 showing current career SES status or career SES reinstatement eligibility.

    4. Applicants who have successfully completed an OPM approved SES Candidate Development Program must submit a copy of their certification.

    5. Current or former Federal Civilian employees, must submit a copy of your most recent SF-50 (non-award) documenting show the following: 1) Full position title; 2) appointment type; 3) occupational series; 4) pay plan, grade, and step; 5) tenure code; 6) service computation date (SCD).

    6. ALL APPLICANTS - If positive education requirement: you must submit a copy of your transcript(s) or a separate course listing showing the course title, department, hours earned (quarters or semester), and grade. If you have completed any part of your education outside of the U.S., you must submit the evaluation of your foreign education that has been prepared by an accredited organization. The National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) can provide a list of who can evaluate your foreign education. For additional information, visit Department of Education
    In addition, you have the option of submitting a cover letter (one page maximum).
    All documents must be uploaded into the system;
    USAJobs Resume Builder resumes will not be accepted.
    Fonts cannot be smaller than 10 point.
    Separate written narratives addressing the ECQs will not be considered.
    Pages submitted in excess of the limits described above will not be considered. Substituting pages for other required documents in the application is not acceptable (e.g., submitting only a four-page resume but adding an additional page to address an MTQ).
    Do not use borders, provide photos or list a Social Security Number or date of birth on any attachment.

    Please review: Tips for preparing SES applications . We recommend that your resume emphasize your level of responsibilities, the scope and complexity of the programs managed, and your program accomplishments, including the results of your actions.

    It is important that you are complete and thorough in your resume. Please be sure to include and address all ECQs & MTQs in your resume and application package. A sample 5-page resume that incorporates ECQs can be viewed on this link (indexed at page 29-37): Guide to SES Quals

    If you are selected for this position, you may be asked to provide additional documentation to verify your responses.

    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.

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