Utah State University

Ecology Field Technician

City Logan Campus
Posted Date 3 months ago(3/8/2024 4:20 PM)
Requisition ID
# of Openings
Job Locations
Category (Portal Searching)
Research (non-Faculty)
Position Type
Non-benefited (hourly) Part-Time
Job Classification
Percent of Time or Hours per Week
Schedule may vary
Quinney College of Natural Resourcs
Watershed Sciences
Advertised Salary
$14 - $15 per hour
Telework Eligible


Seeking an ecology field technician to assist USU students with scientific field research investigating river productivity and trophic relationships in response to river alteration in the upper Colorado River Basin. Field sites span tributaries in south-central Utah, western Colorado, and northern New Mexico. Work will be field based with some laboratory responsibilities. Work hours will be variable and highly dependent on river flow conditions. Overtime may be required in the field. Field hitches will range from 2-8 days at a time with tent camping for lodging while on field campaigns. A crew of at least two will travel to field sites in a university vehicle, and the technician should be comfortable driving for several hours consecutively as field sites are not proximate to each other. The position will begin in mid-July and run through September, with the potential to extend through early December. Dates are subject to change based on weather and spring runoff. Work is based out of Logan, Utah and the technician is responsible for locating housing and transportation to Logan.


Primary tasks include:

  • Installing and maintaining oxygen sensors in tributaries
  • Sampling benthic algae and macroinvertebrates with a Surber sampler and kick net
  • Seining or electrofishing to capture fish
  • Walking in and navigating streams
  • Processing macroinvertebrate samples in the lab


Minimum Qualifications:

  1. Applicant should have or be seeking a degree in a science-related field such as biology, ecology, chemistry, or fisheries.
  2. Applicant must have a valid driver's license to perform essential job responsibilities and must pass a State of Utah driver's exam.
  3. Applicant must be able to swim.

Preferred Qualifications:

  1. Experience with fish sampling, fish identification, invertebrate sampling, invertebrate identification, data gathering, and working and boating in high-flow rivers is highly preferred.
  2. Experience operating 4WD vehicles on rocky, muddy, and icy roads is also preferred.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  1. The applicant must be comfortable working and camping in extreme heat and cold (10-100°F), buggy conditions, fast-flowing water, and driving for long periods of time (up to 7 hours) with one other person and limited or no cellular phone service.
  2. Applicant should have excellent communication skills, close attention to detail, and the ability to follow written and verbal instructions.
  3. Applicant must be able to have a positive attitude in adverse and potentially stressful conditions.

Required Documents

Along with the online application, please attach:

  1. Resume to be uploaded at the beginning of your application in the Candidate Profile under “Resume/CV” 
  2. Cover letter to be typed/pasted at the end of your application 
  3. The names, emails and phone numbers for 3 references to be entered into the Reference section.

**Document size may not exceed 10 MB.**

Advertised Salary

$14 - $15 per hour


The environment and physical requirements may change depending on the specific function of the work performed. Incumbents may be in both indoor and outdoor environments. Indoors, in an office space, event space, or public space are protected from weather conditions, but not necessarily from temperature changes. Incumbents may nearly continuously sit and often use repetitive hand motion (such as typing).  


Outside, employees will not be protected from weather conditions, including extreme cold and extreme heat for extended periods.  This position requires considerable physical activity.  Employees must have sufficient strength to perform the duties and responsibilities of the position including heavy lifting to face-level (up to 75 lbs.) and/or pushing and pulling of heavy objects. Employees must be prepared to assume uncomfortable positions, such as crawling, kneeling, and squatting.  Employees must adhere to safety precautions and may be required to use protective equipment. 

College/Department Highlights

The S. J. & Jessie E. Quinney College of Natural Resources is nationally and internationally recognized for its research, extension, and teaching on natural and socio-environmental ecosystems. It is a high-impact college at Utah State University with over $15M in research funding annually, 55 tenure-track faculty in three departments, and close partnerships with federal and state natural resource agencies.  

The Department of Watershed Sciences in QCNR is a powerhouse in the science of ‘wet’ ecosystems, including rivers, lakes, wetlands, reservoirs, and the watersheds that feed them. Faculty are committed to making science useful for planning, management and restoration efforts, and are well-positioned to study and solve complex, interdisciplinary problems with a cadre of ecologists, hydrologists, geomorphologists, biogeochemists, and others. 

University Highlights

Founded in 1888, Utah State University is Utah’s premier land-grant, public service university, with a strong commitment to excellence, access, and inclusion, empowering people to lead successful lives of involvement, innovation, and impact. Utah State provides high-quality education to 27,500-plus students locations throughout the state, including at three residential campuses, eight statewide campuses, and 23 education centers. USU Online educates students from all 50 states and 55 countries. For over 25 years, USU Extension has served and engaged Utahns in all of Utah’s counties. As an R1 research institution, Utah State is dedicated to advancing knowledge through research and scholarly activities, providing a high-quality undergraduate and graduate education at an affordable price.


Utah State is committed to cultivating a community of inclusive excellence where all perspectives, values, cultures, and identities are acknowledged, welcomed, and valued. We seek to recruit, hire, and retain people from all walks of life who will champion excellence in education, research, discovery, outreach, and service. We believe that promoting a strong sense of community and belonging empowers and engages all members of USU to thrive and be successful. Forbes recognized our commitment to employees when they named Utah State the best employer in Utah in 2023. Learn more about USU. 


The university provides a Dual Career Assistance Program to support careers for partners who are also seeking employment. Additionally, USU is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities. To request a reasonable accommodation for a disability, contact the university’s ADA Coordinator in the Office of Human Resources at (435) 797-0122 or hr@usu.edu. 


About the Region

U.S. News and World Report ranked Utah first for its strong economy, fiscal stability, education, and health care. Outstanding outdoor recreational opportunities abound throughout the state, including five national parks, 43 state parks and recreation areas, and 15 alpine ski resorts. The home of USU’s main campus, Logan, is a city of 54,000-plus people in a picturesque mountain valley 80 miles north of Salt Lake City. The Logan metro area claimed the top spot in the Milken Institute’s 2022 ranking for best-performing small cities in the nation. 


*updated 04/2024

Notice of Non-discrimination

In its programs and activities, including in admissions and employment, Utah State University does not discriminate or tolerate discrimination, including harassment, based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, status as a protected veteran, or any other status protected by University policy, Title IX, or any other federal, state, or local law.

The following individuals have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the application of Title IX and its implementing regulations and/or USU’s non-discrimination policies:


Executive Director of the Office of Equity Matthew Pinner, discrimination@usu.edu, Distance Education Rm. 401, 435-797-1266

Title IX Coordinator Cody Carmichael, titleix@usu.edu, Distance Education Rm. 404, 435-797-1266

Mailing address: 5100 Old Main Hill, Logan, UT 84322

For further information regarding non-discrimination, please visit https://equity.usu.edu/, or contact:

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 800-421-3481, OCR@ed.gov

*updated 09/2023


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