Mechanical Engineer

March 6, 2023
Application ends: March 19, 2025

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Job Description

Full Job Description



  • Assist with or provides input for preparation of plans, specifications and engineering estimates covering repairs, maintenance and improvements of the turbines and related equipment used for hydro-electric generation at Grand Coulee Dam.
  • Participate in and assists with the preparation of preliminary design studies, design memoranda, final design calculations and plans, technical specification provisions and labor and material estimates.
  • Review mechanical portions of engineering designs to identify potential deficiencies and discrepancies; prepares comments and recommendation for the correction of designs.
  • Prepare drawings of proposed or as built conditions of projects engaged with.
  • Engage in substantial rotational tours of duty at GCPO facility (Engineering Design, O&M Engineering, Construction, and Operations) and other Region facilities. Participate in classroom and on the job training presented through work details to various facilities at GCPO.
  • Test powerplant equipment, presenting and sharing test results, and preparing reports of findings.



Conditions of Employment

You must be a U.S. Citizen or U.S. National.
You must be suitable for federal employment, determined by a background investigation.
You must submit a resume and supporting documentation (see Required Documents).
You must submit eligibility documents for veterans consideration (see Required Documents).
You must meet any minimum education and/or experience requirements (see Qualifications).
You must submit transcript(s) to verify education requirements (see Qualifications/Education).


To be eligible for consideration, you must first meet the Basic Education Requirement for this position:
A. Degree: professional engineering. To be acceptable, the curriculum 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. 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 professional 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:

  • Professional registration or licensure – Current registration as an Engineer Intern (EI), Engineer in Training (EIT)1, or licensure as a Professional Engineer (PE) by any State, the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico.
  • Written Test – Evidence of having successfully passed the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE)2 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.
  • 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 a professional engineering curriculum as described in paragraph A.
  • 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.

Specialized Experience Requirements:
In addition to the basic education requirement, in order to be rated as qualified for this position, the HR Office must be able to determine that you meet the education and/or specialized experience requirement – this information must be clearly supported in the resume.

To qualify at the GS-05, successfully completion, or will complete by entrance on duty, a full 4-year course of study in an accredited college or university leading to a professional engineering degree.

To qualify at the GS-07, you must possess one year of specialized experience equivalent in difficulty and complexity to at least the GS-05 level in federal service having demonstrated experience with Mechanical Engineering theories, principles, and practices working with electrical power, communication, and control drawings. Other applicable experience that included industrial systems and electrical work on large facilities.

Substitution of Education for the Specialized Experience Requirement:
For GS-07: Successful completion of 1 year (18 semester hours) graduate-level education directly related to the position; **OR** Superior academic achievement is based on one of the following: (1) class standing, (2) grade-point average, or (3) honor society member.

The superior academic achievement provision is to be used to determine eligibility for applicable GS-07 level positions of persons who have completed (or expect to complete within 9 months) all the requirements for bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with a qualifying grade point average (GPA), class standing, or honors society. For more information, visit OPM.

Experience refers to paid and unpaid 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.

You must meet all Eligibility and Qualification requirements, including any selective placement factors if applicable, by 03/20/2023.


Education requirements will be accepted if expected completion of qualifying education is within 3 months from the date of application. You cannot be appointed into this position until successful completion of education has been verified.

This position has a mandatory education requirement. You must submit a copy of college transcript(s) (unofficial copy is acceptable) to support claimed education if substituting education for experience. Transcripts must include the name of the college or university and date the degree was conferred. Non-submission will result in being rated not-qualified for the position.

You will be required to provide official college transcripts to verify educational qualifications, if selected. An official transcript must be sent directly from the University’s Registrar’s office and must be provided from the institution awarding the degree. Academic transcripts certified by notary publics are NOT official. Official transcripts must be submitted prior to reporting to work as a condition of employment. Failure to submit official transcripts may be grounds for dismissal or rescission of the job offer.

Accreditation: Only education from an accredited college or university recognized by the Department of Education is acceptable to meet education requirements or to substitute for experience, if applicable. For additional info, refer to the Office of Personnel Management and U.S. Department of Education.

Foreign Education: To receive credit for education completed outside the United States, you must show proof that the education has been submitted to a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign educational credentials and such education has been deemed at least equivalent to that gained in conventional U.S. education programs. For additional info, refer to the U.S. Network for Education Information.

Additional information

Position is being advertised concurrently under vacancy announcement BOR-CPN-22-MP-11846904-CW. Applicants interested in applying under both announcement numbers, must submit application packages for each.

You may be required to serve an initial probationary period. Current, permanent Federal employees who are selected from this announcement may be required to serve a probationary period.

This position is an entry-level engineer hired under the requirements and provisions of Reclamation’s Rotation Engineer Training Program (Program). The program provides for intensive training and professional development. A program participant may be promoted from GS-05 to GS-07 or from GS-07 to GS-09 after a minimum of six (6) months of intensive documented training and evidence of professional development as documented through successful performance in the program. Only one (1) accelerated promotion for each participant may be made. Promotions are neither guaranteed nor automatic but initiated at the request of the supervisor.

Reclamation has determined that the duties of this position are suitable for telework and you may be allowed to telework with supervisory approval.

If otherwise eligible and qualified, you may be offered a recruitment or relocation incentive. The decision to offer an incentive will be made on a case-by-case basis and is neither promised nor guaranteed. For information, visit: Recruitment Incentive or Relocation Incentive.

If otherwise eligible and qualified, you may request consideration for a Superior Qualifications Appointment. For information, visit: OPM Fact Sheet.

DOI uses E-Verify to confirm the employment eligibility of all newly hired employees. To learn more about E-Verify, including applicant rights and responsibilities, please visit

This position is designated as a MODERATE RISK Public Trust position. It requires a fully completed and favorably adjudicated Public Trust Suitability Background Investigation (T2S or T2RS or equivalent) that is current (within the last 5 years). This is a condition of employment.

Male applicants born after December 31, 1959 must certify registration with the Selective Service System or that the applicant is exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. Go to:

This is a non-bargaining unit position.

Additional vacancies may be filled using this job announcement.

***This is NOT a virtual position.**

These positions are for the Grand Coulee Power Office’s Engineer Training Program. The program provides development opportunities for newly hired engineers. The program provides new employees with a broad knowledge of Reclamation activities and resources, and lays the foundation for developing a versatile, efficient, and flexible engineering staff.

Participants will be employees of Grand Coulee Power Office and will participate in rotational deployment to various offices and functions at Grand Coulee and will require extended travel and temporary duty assignments to the Regional Office in Boise, ID, the Technical Service Center in Denver, CO, and to other offices and facilities. After the completion of the Engineer Training Program, employees will be assigned to positions as:

  • Powerhouse O&M Mechanical Engineer.
  • Capital projects and planning group Mechanical Engineer.


  • 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. Opens in a new windowLearn more about federal benefits.


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    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 You Will Be Evaluated

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

Category rating and selection procedures will be used to evaluate applications from this announcement. If an applicant meets the basic qualification requirements, his/her on-line responses to the vacancy assessment questionnaire will be used to determine the quality and extent of his/her experience, education, training, etc., for placement in one of the following categories: 1) Best Qualified, 2) Well Qualified, and 3) Qualified. Qualified candidates will be assigned a numerical score on a scale of 70-100. The Category Rating Process does not add veterans’ preference points or apply the “rule of three” but protects the rights of Veterans by placing them ahead of non-preference eligibles within each quality category. Veterans’ preference eligibles who meet the minimum qualification requirements and who have a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10 percent will be listed in the highest quality category (except in the case of scientific or professional positions at the GS-09 level or higher). The assessment questionnaire will take approximately 30 minutes to complete.

Your qualifications will be evaluated based on your application materials (e.g., resume, supporting documents), the responses you provide to the application questionnaire, and the result of the additional assessments required for this position. You will be assessed on the following Competencies (knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics):

  • Design
  • Integrity/Honesty
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Oral Communication
  • Oral Communication
  • Problem Solving