Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago

Environmental ResearchTechnician (#20003636)


General Statement

Under supervision, and in accordance with specified methods, performs a variety of technical duties associated with the collection of field and laboratory data related to agronomic, wastewater, surface water quality, or aquatic biology research and monitoring projects, the analysis of samples, and the operation and maintenance of equipment used in the field and laboratory.

Essential Job Functions

Essential job functions are fundamental, core functions common to positions in a classification. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all job duties for any one position in the class. Since class specifications are designed to be descriptive and not restrictive, incumbents may complete one or all of the job duties listed or tasks of similar kind not specifically listed here.

  • Collects wastewater, gas, soil, crop, groundwater, surface water, sludge, and other samples.
  • Performs work involved in field and laboratory research and monitoring projects; collection, compilation, and collation of data; maintains records; and prepares reports.
  • Performs biological and chemical analysis of soil samples, water and wastewater samples, sludge samples, gas samples, and biosolids.
  • Performs microbiological analysis of water and wastewater.
  • Assembles, calibrates, maintains, and operates laboratory apparatus and field equipment for analytical or research work.
  • Collects fish, sediment, and other samples from surface water monitoring stations using approved protocols.
  • Maintains and downloads water quality monitors.
  • Performs Whole Effluent Toxicity testing on aquatic organisms, with duties including maintaining biological cultures, keeping detailed records, and microscopic analysis.

Other Job Functions

  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Environmental Conditions

Positions in this classification involve a combination of laboratory work and work in the field. Laboratory work requires the use of standard laboratory equipment and may involve exposure to a variety of chemical and biological materials, some with noxious odors. Field work is performed outside the office and may involve exposure to industrial equipment or operations, contact with hazardous or toxic material and exposure to a variety of weather conditions. Field work will also require the operation of a District vehicle.

Desirable Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Knowledge of basic laboratory and field research and monitoring techniques.
  • Basic knowledge of the operation and maintenance of laboratory and field equipment.
  • Basic knowledge of laboratory and field safety.
  • Ability to read and follow standard operating instructions and procedures in the performance of field and laboratory tests.
  • Ability to collect aquatic biological samples and conduct evaluations as directed.
  • Ability perform basic arithmetic calculations and tabulate data and results accurately.
  • Ability to communicate effectively, orally and in writing.

Absolute Requirements

Possession of a valid driver’s license.

Minimum Qualification Requirements

Graduation from a standard senior high school or the equivalent and two years of full-time study at an accredited college or university majoring in chemistry, biology, microbiology, or a natural, environmental, or agricultural science or a science curriculum involving scientific laboratory and field work, and one year of full-time experience in a scientific position operating and maintaining field monitoring and research equipment or laboratory apparatus and performing sample collection and analysis.

Substitution

Additional full-time study at an accredited college or university majoring in chemistry, biology, microbiology, or a natural, environmental, or agricultural science or a science curriculum involving scientific laboratory and field work may be substituted for the required experience on a year-for-year basis. Additional full-time experience in a scientific position operating and maintaining field monitoring and research equipment or laboratory apparatus and performing sample collection and analysis may be substituted for the required education on a year-for-year basis.

Promotional Requirement

  • One year of service with the District as a Laboratory Technician I or Laboratory Assistant.
  • Civil service status in one of the foregoing classifications.

CLASS: 20003636; EST: 1/1/2016; REV: 9/1/2017;