State of Maryland

AGRICULTURAL LABORATORY SCIENTIST ADVANCED (#000081)

- Hourly / - BiWeekly /
- Monthly / $47,795.00-$76,513.00 Yearly


GRADE

17

CLASS ATTRIBUTES

SKILLED SERVICE         BARGAINING UNIT: G

NATURE OF WORK

An Agricultural Laboratory Scientist Advanced is the advanced level of work performing veterinary analytical, diagnostic, and epidemiological laboratory testing in compliance with applicable local, State and federal regulations and standards for the purpose of controlling and eradicating animal diseases.  Employees in this classification do not supervise other Agricultural Laboratory Scientists but may have supervisory responsibility for lower-level laboratory staff.  

Employees in this classification receive general supervision from a Veterinarian or other designated official.  The work is performed in a laboratory setting.  Employees are required to observe infection control precautions in order to prevent contamination and the spread of disease.  The work may require the lifting and moving of laboratory equipment and materials.            

Positions in this classification are evaluated using the classification job evaluation methodology.  The use of this method involves comparing assigned duties and responsibilities of a position to the job criteria found in the Nature of Work and Examples of Work Sections of the class specification.  

The Agricultural Laboratory Scientist Advanced is differentiated from the Agricultural Laboratory Scientist III in that the Agricultural Laboratory Scientist Advanced performs broader responsibilities of laboratory diagnostic and analysis work by conducting tests in multiple assigned areas, functions as a technical specialist in the testing of specific diseases, or in the use of the latest technological testing procedures while the Agricultural Laboratory Scientist III performs the full range of duties and responsibilities under general supervision.

EXAMPLES OF WORK

Performs advanced work in biological or chemical testing and analyses of body fluids, tissues, feces, and other biological samples from animals for the purpose of diagnosing and identifying animal diseases;

Manages the broader responsibilities of laboratory diagnostic and analysis work by conducting tests in multiple assigned areas, such as serology, virology, parasitology, mycology, hematology, and bacteriology or functions as a technical specialist in the testing of specific diseases, such as Johne’s disease in cattle or Salmonella pullorum in poultry, or in the use of the latest technological testing procedures;

Functions as a Department expert in a specialty area, advising and training other Agricultural Laboratory Scientists;

Instructs lower-level Agricultural Laboratory Scientists in the latest technological testing, such as the Polymerase Chain Reaction;

Searches for well-documented tests and determines methodologies to be employed for the isolation and identification of viruses, for serological and immunological procedures to be performed, and for other aspects of laboratory work;

Develops and updates procedure manuals, such as Standards in Operating Procedures (SOP), and related material for assigned work areas in a diagnostic laboratory;

Evaluates new technologies and makes recommendations to supervisor to purchase new equipment;

Isolates and identifies endemic and exotic pathogens in animal specimens submitted by pathologists, practicing veterinarians, and allied animal health agencies by using techniques in bioanalysis, chemical, or microbiological analysis;

Carries out regulatory functions in compliance with local, State and federal regulations and standards by testing samples from horses for diseases including contagious Equine Metritis and Equine Infectious Anemia;

Performs special tests and surveys and participates in special projects as required;

Prepares reports of findings including results as part of the pathologist’s final report on postmortem examinations of animals;

Provides test results to veterinarians, animal owners or other submitters of specimens;

Requisitions needed laboratory supplies by identifying required supplies, discussing product availability with vendors, obtaining bids, and selecting appropriate commercial sources;

Operates specialized laboratory equipment and instruments, such as gas chromatographs, biological hoods, microprocessor analyzers, anaerobic systems, spectrophotometers, hemophotometers, pH meters, and microscopes;

Reviews scientific publications and professional journals and attends scientific seminars and workshops in order to stay abreast of current trends, research and technological developments;

May supervise lower-level laboratory staff, including Agricultural Laboratory Technicians;

May teach and supervise university students;

May operate the laboratory in the absence of the Laboratory Director;

May prepare statistical monthly reports;

May conduct tests and interpret results as certified by the United States Department of Agriculture, such as for Brucellosis, Equine Infectious Anemia, and Bovine Leucosis and must maintain certification by completing annual USDA proficiency tests;

Performs other related duties.

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES

Knowledge of college-level biology or chemistry applicable to animal health laboratory practice in biochemistry, microbiology, virology, immunology, bacteriology, serology, parasitology, chromatology, and molecular biology;

Knowledge of laboratory procedures, practices, methods and instrumentation;

Knowledge of mathematics, including algebra and statistics;

Knowledge of computer software used for diagnostic tests;

Skill in understanding and following laboratory procedures and policies;

Skill in conducting analyses, analyzing test data, and drawing accurate conclusions;

Skill in the application of universal precautions in handling potentially infectious biological materials and hazardous chemicals;

Ability to manage broader responsibilities in laboratory diagnostic work by handling multiple assigned areas or by functioning as a technical specialist;

Ability to supervise lower-level laboratory staff;

Ability to operate the laboratory in the absence of the Laboratory Director;

Ability to maintain accurate records and prepare scientific reports;

Ability to operate and maintain specialized laboratory equipment;

Ability to streak and isolate cultures;

Ability to communicate effectively.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS

Education:   A Bachelor’s degree in the biological or chemical sciences from an accredited college or university including one course in general microbiology and one course in pathogenic, clinical or medical microbiology.

Experience: Three years of experience performing laboratory analysis work in a biological, chemical, food, commercial, animal health, medical or public health laboratory.

Notes:

1. Experience performing veterinary analytical, diagnostic, and epidemiological laboratory testing work may be substituted on a year-for-year basis for the required education.

2. A Master’s degree in the chemical or biological sciences from an accredited college or university may be substituted for one year of the required experience.

3. A Doctorate degree in the chemical or biological sciences from an accredited college or university may be substituted for two years of the required experience.

4. Candidates may substitute U.S. Armed Forces military service experience as a commissioned officer in natural resources management and biological science classification or natural resources management and biological science specialty codes in the animal science field of work on a year-for-year basis for the required experience and education. 

LICENSES, REGISTRATIONS AND CERTIFICATIONS

NOT APPLICABLE.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS

1. Candidates for some positions may be given a medical examination to rule out color blindness.

2. Employees in this classification must be willing to undergo and maintain rabies immunization.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Class specifications are broad descriptions covering groups of positions used by various State departments and agencies.  Position descriptions maintained by the using department or agency specifically address the essential job functions of each position.

This is a Skilled Service classification in the State Personnel Management System.  All positions in this classification are Skilled Service positions.  Some positions in Skilled Service classifications may be designated Special Appointment in accordance with the State Personnel and Pensions Article, Section 6-405, Annotated Code of Maryland.  

This classification is assigned to Bargaining Unit G, Engineering, Scientific and Administrative Professionals classes.  As provided by the State Personnel and Pensions Article, Section 3-102, special appointment, temporary, contractual, supervisory, managerial and confidential employees are excluded from collective bargaining.  Additionally, certain executive branch agencies are exempt from collective bargaining and all positions in those agencies are excluded from collective bargaining.

Date Revised

February 23, 2018 

Approved By

Director, Division of Classification and Salary

CLASS: 000081; EST: ; REV: 2/23/2018;

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