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Environmental Technician (7 positions)

Biotech/R&D/Science Jobs
Washington State Department of Ecology

Job Summary

Full Time
Posted on
March 05, 2019
Washington State Department of Ecology
Lacey, WA
Years of Experiences
1 - 3
Career Level
Entry Level
Education Level
High School or equivalent
$29,545.20 - $38,126.88 Annually

About Washington State Department of Ecology

The Department of Ecology is Washington's environmental protection agency. Our mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington's land, air and water for current and future generations. We support environmental work throughout Washington. Nearly 70 percent of our budget is passed through to local communities to pay for projects that benefit the environment. We were founded in 1970 as the first agency in the nation dedicated to environmental protection.

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Job description

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Keeping Washington Clean and Evergreen

Protecting Washington State's environment for current and future generations is what we do every day at Ecology. We are a culture that is invested in making a difference. If you want to join a team that is highly effective, collaborative, has leadership that embraces the value of people, and believes in the fun factor, Ecology is a good fit.

The Environmental Assessment Program (EAP) program within the Department of Ecology is looking to fill several Environmental Technician positions for the summer 2019 field season. We are recruiting for:  four (4) Watershed Health Monitoring (WHM), two (2) Forest Practices Effectiveness Monitoring (FPEM), and one (1) Eastern Regional Office (ERO) Environmental Technicians.

The WHM and FPEM positions will be located in Lacey, WA and work statewide with a primary focus in Eastern Washington (WHM) and Southwestern Washington (FPEM). The WHM positions will also cover a small number of sites scattered in Western Washington. The ERO position will be located in Spokane, WA and work throughout Central and Eastern Washington. Travel and lodging will be reimbursed by the Department of Ecology.

The WHM positions will start June 17th and will go to no later than October 15th. The end date of work is flexible and depends on how the field season goes. Students needing to return to school in the fall are still encouraged to apply.

The FPEM positions will start June 3rd and will go through August 31st. The ERO position will start in June 3rd and will go through October 31st.

These positions give you the opportunity to use what you've learned in school and apply it to environmental sampling techniques. Some of the key work activities include: hiking, field navigation, biological monitoring, water quality sampling, habitat surveys and using different types of monitoring equipment. The information that you collect will help assess the condition of streams and watersheds. The data is used to describe the status and trends of watershed health and the effectiveness of forest practices to better inform natural resource conservation and management plans.

We are looking for applicants who are motivated, adaptable, team-oriented, dedicated and who have a desire to gain experience in environmental sampling.

As an agency, our mission is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington's environment for current and future generations. We invest in our employees to create and sustain a working environment that encourages creative leadership, effective resource management, teamwork, professionalism and accountability. Maybe you've seen some of our recent stories on TwitterFacebookInstagram or our blog.

To learn more about our agency, please visit our website at

Local efforts... Diverse people... Statewide impacts


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Some of the key work activities for these positions include: 

  • Being responsible for field equipment maintenance and organization, including calibration of Hach multi-probe.

  • Reading QAPP/QAMP, SOPs, and other required protocols within the first two weeks in order to successfully assist in conducting all the field data collection events below.

  • Assisting with water quality sample collection.

  • Hiking in remote areas with rugged terrain and a heavy pack.

  • Helping with habitat surveys.

  • Assisting with benthic macroinvertebrate sampling.

  • Helping assess fish assemblage.

  • Assisting with boat operation duties.

  • Helping with quality assurance review of environmental data.

  • Participating in unit, section, and program meetings as appropriate.

  • Attending and staying current on required trainings, especially safety trainings.

Some of the key work activities of the WHM positions include.

  • Under supervision and direction of professional staff, serves as field assistant on a 4 member crew conducting watershed health protocols including physical stream surveys, measuring various chemical parameters and collecting biological samples.

  • Provides initial review of the raw data recorded in the field for completeness and overall quality.

  • Suggests refining data collection methods.

  • Collects water quality samples.

  • Assists with field work preparation every week before the scheduled sampling.

  • Collects all samples following Standard Operating Procedures in a timely fashion.   

Some of the key work activities of the FPEM positions include:

  • Under supervision and direction of professional staff, serves as field assistant on a 2-3 member crew conducting stream surveys and collecting stream channel measurements.

  • Tasks include field equipment preparation and maintenance, collection of environmental samples, and measuring stream flow.

  • Under supervision, assists with sample processing in the lab, entering data into databases, and performing data quality reviews.

Some of the key work activities of the ERO position include:

  • Field gear preparation and use, instrument calibration, collection and preparation of environmental samples and stream flow measurements. 

  • Under supervision and direction of professional staff, uses established protocols to conduct Surface Water Monitoring assessments that supports evaluation of impacts to water quality and aquatic ecosystems.

  • Works in rugged and sometimes remote field locations for consecutive days under adverse weather conditions.

  • Traverses streambeds in chest waders to measure water quality or stream flow.

  • Assists with data reduction, analysis, entry of project data into Ecology's Environmental Information Management System (EIM).

  • Assists with quality assurance review of environmental data.

  • Normal working hours will be exceeded and extended days of travel will occur during the field season. Office hours will be spent at a cubicle while conducting various data management tasks like data entry, evaluation/analysis.

The four (4) WHM positions will start June 17, 2019 and end no later than October 15, 2019. The end date is flexible and depends on how the field season goes. These positions will be based in Lacey, WA but work primarily in the Eastern Washington with additional sites in Western Washington. Training will occur in Lacey, WA.

The two (2) FPEM positions will start June 3, 2019 and end no later than August 30, 2019. These positions will be based in Lacey, WA but work primarily in the Southwestern Washington. Training will occur in Lacey, WA.

The one (1) ERO position will start June 3, 2019 and end October 31, 2019. This position is based in Spokane, WA and works throughout Central and Eastern Washington. Training will occur in Spokane, WA.
Travel and lodging will be reimbursed by the Department of Ecology. The schedule will be 10 hour shifts, work 8 days in a row and have 6 days off (WHM); and 10 hour shifts, work 4 days per week (FPEM & ERO).



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Required Qualifications
Graduation from high school or GED equivalent.


Two (2) years of technical or clerical (level 3) experience such as performing the duties as an Office Assistant 3 in an environmental agency or an office.

College-level course work in environmental, physical or natural sciences, or closely related field may be substituted, year for year, for the required experience.

Desired Qualifications 

  • Experience operating boats and related equipment. Experience collecting water quality samples, and operating aquatic sampling equipment.

  • Navigation skills and experience using paper maps.

  • Read documents for accurate comprehension and action.

  • The following is a list of office machines, equipment, tools, motor vehicles that may be used on the job: Computer, telephone, copy machine, network printer, continuous data monitors, field meters, electro-fisher, operate boats, database software, spreadsheet software, word processing software, statistics software, van/vehicle; Habitat measures (leveling rod, measuring tape, canopy densiometer, clinometer, compass; hand level, flow meter); Chemistry measures (Hydrolab minisonde); and GPS.

Physical Requirements

  • Working in remote and rugged locations under a variety of weather conditions.

  • Traveling long distances in agency vehicles.

  • Frequent fieldwork that requires both overnight and day trips.

  • Traversing uneven and sometimes slippery terrain to access stream study sites.

  • Ability to maneuver sampling equipment in a small boat.

  • Ability to swim.

  • Ability to lift and carry 50 lbs.

  • Perform physical labor required to install monitoring equipment.

  • Work with a computer in a cubicle for long periods of time.

Special Requirements/Conditions of Employment 

  • Must have a valid driver's license.

  • Maintain current certification for first aid/CPR (training is provided by Ecology).

Supplemental Information

Application Instructions:
Please include the following documents as an attachment to your application:

  • A cover letter describing how your experience, skills and abilities meet the required qualifications of this position. Please state if you have a position preference (WHM, FPEM or ERO) or not in your cover letter.

  • A resume outlining your professional experience.

Please complete the applicant profile when applying for this position. Or, you may paste the text of your resume within the profile's resume text field.

Please read the supplemental questions carefully and answer completely. Incomplete responses, including "please see resume" may disqualify you from further consideration.

Department of Ecology employees, please make sure to answer the agency-wide questions regarding permanent status as a classified employee within the Washington General Service or Washington Management Service. Do not forget to select Department of Ecology as a response to question 2, and type your personnel ID number for question 3. If you are not sure of your status or do not know your personnel ID number, please contact Human Resources at (360) 407-6186.

If you are reading this announcement in print format, please visit to access the online recruitment system. Click on "Look for Jobs" and select Dept. of Ecology under the "Department" search list. Click "Apply Search."

Other Information:
If you need assistance applying for this job, please call Human Resources at (360) 407-6186 or e-mail Please do not call this number or send an email to this address to follow-up the status of your application. You can view the latest status of your application on your profile's main page.

If you have specific questions about the positions, please email:

Please do not contact Stacy, Pam or Cathrene to inquire about the status of your application.

The act of submitting application materials electronically is considered affirmation that the information is complete and truthful. The state may verify this information and any untruthful or misleading answers are cause for rejection of your application or dismissal if employed.

This position is included in the Washington Federation of State Employees (WFSE) union bargaining unit for the Department of Ecology.

The Washington State Department of Ecology is an equal opportunity employer. We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial, ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of disability, persons over 40 years of age, veterans or people with military status, and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply. Persons needing accommodation in the application/testing process or this job announcement in an alternative format may call (360) 407-6186. Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing may call the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.