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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » Plant Introduction Research » Careers

Career opportunities are quite varied.  Current openings are for part-time positions.

Student Hourly Employment:

Student Hourly Employees are hired to work at the USDA-ARS North Central Regional Plant Introduction Station to assist us in all phases of our operations. During the fall we hand harvest corn, sunflowers, cucumbers, pumpkins, muskmelons and many other crops. From May through early November we are primarily working outdoors. After harvest is complete we will be in the labs and seed processing areas cleaning seed samples, collecting data, and conducting germination tests. We also spend time working in our greenhouses during the winter months. This includes planting, potting, watering and hand pollinating many different species of crops. Starting in the spring we package seed for planting, transplant bedding plants to the field, and continue our greenhouse work. Work during the spring is a combination of indoor and outdoor tasks. Summers are spent planting, weeding, and pollinating our crops.

Student Hourly Employees are hired throughout the year as need arises. The best time to apply is at the beginning of each semester and after spring break for summer positions. Only students enrolled at least half-time are eligible for hire. During the Fall and Spring academic semesters we hire students who can work 4-hour time blocks from 8-12 or 1-5 Monday-Friday. Student applicants must have availability to work a minimum of 12 hours per week and may work up to 40 hours per week. Summer employees generally work forty hours per week and overtime is available. Many of our summer employees are required to work some weekends.

All new employees are hired at a base rate (currently $9.24 per hour). Federal student employees earn one hour of vacation and one hour of sick leave for every 20 hours they work. Promotions potential does exist.

Potential student employees may apply by completing an application at the Plant Introduction Farm Headquarters Office located on the SW Corner of State and Mortensen in Ames. After arriving at the intersection proceed south on Mortensen Road about 400 feet. Turn right at the red sign onto a paved entry lane. Follow the lane until you reach a parking lot. The Headquarters Office is a brown metal building, enter through the south entryway and leave the application in Room 101 at the receptionists desk. It will take 15-20 minutes to complete your application.

For additional information contact:

Larry L. Lockhart
North Central Regional Plant Introduction Station
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011

A job summary pdf file is available:  Click here

Career Opportunities

The links below are to current ARS job openings listed at the official job site of the US Federal Government, USAJOBS.

ARS openings in Ames, IA
ARS openings in Iowa
ARS openings nationwide