Field Operations Technician

Apply now Job no: 513138
Classification:Crafts & Trades I
Grade:Crafts & Trades T1
Work type:Crafts and Trades
Administrative Unit:University of Alaska Fairbanks
School/Business unit:UAF Institute of Arctic Biology
Location: Fairbanks
Categories: Facilities/Skilled Trades, Other

Position Summary:

Toolik Field Station (TFS), a remote field camp located at 284.5 Dalton Highway, is seeking a motivated candidate to work as a Field Operations Technician. This position is based at TFS, typically on a two week on-site and two week off-duty rotation. Transportation between Fairbanks and TFS is provided for on-site shifts. CURRENT LOCAL 6070 MEMBERS RECEIVE HIRING PREFERENCE


15Provide grounds maintenance, snow removal, loading and unloading of commercial and UAF vehicles, and distribution of materials around the station and beyond. This includes, but is not limited to, operating construction and road maintenance equipment in excess of 100 horsepower or vehicles in excess of 33000 GVWR, including wheeled loaders, bulldozers, forklifts, and utility tractors. It also includes shoveling, raking, augering, snowplowing, use of pallet jacks, hand trucks, hand carts, sleds, and other manual labor techniques.Essential
20Provide basic equipment maintenance, monitoring, and repair. This includes, but is not limited to: assembling, overhauling, basic maintenance and rebuilding of small engines, outboards, motors, pumps, generators, ATVs and snow machines. Basic vehicle maintenance includes fluid and filter changes, brake replacement and repair, seal changes, and tire changing.Essential
20Provide basic facility maintenance, monitoring, and repair. On a defined schedule this position checks and records fuel levels, water levels, power consumption, vehicle mileage, and other performance and consumption data around the station. This position provides basic electrical, plumbing, carpentry, and mechanical assistance to the station. Higher level tasking is completed in conjunction with the Lead Science Support and Maintenance Manager (CT3). Basic assistance includes, but is not limited to: small boiler and furnace maintenance, Toyo heater maintenance, basic plumbing repair and fixture replacement, basic and rough carpentry, basic electrical troubleshooting and repair, basic maintenance on cooling and refrigeration systems, and painting. This position will on occasion assist in the repair, maintenance, and fabrication of larger and more complex systems with the Lead Science Support and Maintenance Manager (CT3) and/or an outside National Science Foundation (NSF) contractor. Examples of some major projects include, but are not limited to, the construction of small outbuildings and repair and replacement of hydronic heating systems. This position operates a State of Alaska small treated water system and must have, or be able to obtain, the ADEC Small Treated Water System Operator certification. *The NSF owns and-- through a contractor-- maintains some of the large, more complex facilities and systems at TFS, including the electrical generators, water plant, Dining Hall, Garage, and utility distribution systems. Toolik Field Station uses and operates these facilities (excluding the generators), but major maintenance, upgrade, and repair is directed and performed by NSF through their contractor. TFS staff, including this position, assist in these activities when needed.Essential
35Serve as a science/research technician providing direct science support to research projects at Toolik Field Station, a remote field camp located at mile 284.5 Dalton Highway. Under the guidance of the TFS Facility Supervisor and Lead Science Support and Maintenance Manager (CT3) Science Support/Maintenance Lead (CT3), this position assists research projects in field support, basic fabrication, equipment troubleshooting and repair, training on tools and equipment, and transportation. Field support includes, but is not limited to: assistance installing equipment in the field, augering holes in lake ice, changing gas cylinders in deployed equipment, checking and monitoring gauges, providing “hands and eyes in the field” to projects that are not present at the station, cleaning equipment, and taking basic scientific measurements. Basic scientific fabrication includes, but is not limited to: providing practical knowledge, advice, and hands on assistance to research projects in making modifications to research equipment and structures in the field. This can include basic carpentry, plumbing, welding, electrical, and other skill sets to fabricate the pieces needed to support the field work. Some examples include fabricating basic waterproof enclosures, equipment tripods, and mounts to install instrumentation. Equipment troubleshooting and repair includes, but is not limited to: helping researchers diagnose, and when possible, repair a wide range of scientific equipment. Training on tools and equipment can include giving snowmachine orientations to winter researchers, providing training on using basic power tools such as ice augers and saws, and support using basic lab equipment such as purified water systems, drying ovens, muffle furnaces, chillers, and related. Transportation includes, but is not limited to: assistance transporting researchers and equipment over the Dalton Highway in trucks and over the tundra on snow machines, skis, snowshoes, hiking, and skiff/canoe usage on the lake. It also includes fueling TFS and researcher equipment and adherence to a SPCC plan.Essential
5Act as a Toolik Field Station team member. In a remote location with a small staff and an important mission, everyone at TFS is expected to assist all others when safe and appropriate to do so. This includes, but is not limited to, basic housekeeping, janitorial, customer service, snow removal, food service, general labor, and other duties as assigned.Essential
5Provide basic inventory, warehousing, and supply ordering. This position stocks shelves, racks and bins, maintains inventories and issues materials. Identifies compatible substitute maintenance and operational repair and replacement parts as needed. Periodically receives materials.Essential

Toolik Field Station (TFS) at the Institute of Arctic Biology, a remote field camp located at 284.5 Dalton Highway, is seeking a motivated candidate to work as a Field Operations Technician. TFS is a remote facility located 360 road miles north of Fairbanks on the rural Dalton Highway.  There are no local services.   The population of the station can vary from 3 to 150 residents (over 400 different individuals annually) coming from all over the world.

This is one of two identical positions at Toolik Field Station.  The positions alternate on a schedule of roughly two weeks on-site and two weeks on-break year round.  This allows for 100% on-site coverage of the functions of this position.  The  Lead Science Support and Maintenance Manager (CT3) (this position’s lead) has a similar schedule on-site overlapping with these positions as equally as possible, preferably for a week of each two week shift.  However, this is variable.  The Facility Supervisor (this position’s supervisor) has a variable schedule of roughly two weeks on and two weeks off from April through September, and variable in the winter.  Unless on leave, the  Lead Science Support and Maintenance Manager (CT3) and Facility Supervisor remain in regular contact with the station when not on-site.

Daily tasks consist of assisting on-site users with design and construction of research support equipment and providing technical support to researchers in the field. Please click on this advertisement for more detailed information on the duties of this position.

This position requires living at a remote facility, often with limited privacy, for significant periods of time.  Shifts will sometimes need to be shorter or longer than what is detailed above.  The position will often be required to work significant overtime (65+ hours a week), and will regularly work 7 days a week when on-site. 


The knowledge, skills, and abilities to do all the tasks outlined in the position description, including basic carpentry, electrical, plumbing, mechanical, fabrication, welding, vehicle maintenance and repair, and ATV and snow machine maintenance and repair. Ability to research best practices when needed. Must have knowledge of the scientific research process and equipment used for research.

The work location is in the remote arctic, and often requires back-country travel. Those in the position need to be physically capable of negotiating severe arctic conditions and terrain and maintain a level of fitness and health appropriate for long-term work in a remote location. The ability to deal with being outside all day in extreme cold, mosquitoes, rain, and sun while hiking, lifting, climbing ladders/small towers, and/or backpacking science gear up to several miles are necessary attributes.

Required Education & Experience:

Note: A State of Alaska Small Water System Operator (treated) Certification or the ability to obtain and stay certified and a valid driver's license are required in this position.

Apprentice level or equivalent certification; or a minimum of six years multi-trade experience and/or training, including at least two years of science support experience; or equivalent combination of education and experience.


This is a full-time, Grade CT1, minimum $22.34 hourly, DOE, 12-month position complete with a competitive salary and UA employee benefits package. This position is open until filled with the initial application review taking place on July 29, 2019. To ensure your application is considered, apply by 11:55 pm, 7/28/2019. Applications received after this date may not be considered. A complete application will include a resume, cover letter, and contact information for three professional references.

Background Check:
The successful applicant is required to complete a background check. Any offer of employment is contingent on the background check.

Term Position:
This position is a term-funded position and is reviewed annually for contract renewal at the University's discretion.

L6070 – At-will:
Pursuant to Article 1.5 of the Local 6070 Collective Bargaining Agreement, upon initial hire Local 6070 Bargaining Unit Members are probationary for the first six (6) months of work. During the probationary period, employment may be terminated for no reason or any reason.
Union Representation:
This position is represented by the Alaska Higher Education Crafts & Trades Employees (L6070).

Training Policy:
It is the policy of the University of Alaska Fairbanks that all employees are required to attend training to meet the requirements of the positions they hold, and to complete the required training within a specified period of time to remain employed at UAF. The policy can be located at:

Tobacco-Free Campus:
UAF Campus is a tobacco free campus. For more information, please go to:

Notice of Nondiscrimination:
The University of Alaska is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution. The University of Alaska does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, citizenship, age, sex, physical or mental disability, status as a protected veteran, marital status, changes in marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, parenthood, sexual orientation, gender identity, political affiliation or belief, genetic information, or other legally protected status. The University's commitment to nondiscrimination, including against sex discrimination, applies to students, employees, and applicants for admission and employment. Contact information, applicable laws, and complaint procedures are included on UA's statement of nondiscrimination available at

Advertised: Alaskan Daylight Time
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