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Field Research Technician

Kansas Geological Survey Lawrence, KS
  • Expired: 2 days ago. Applications are no longer accepted.

Field Research Technician

Kansas Geological Survey

Position Overview

This position provides technical field support for KGS scientists and collaboration with outside parties with primary responsibilities to drilling, data collection, equipment modification, upkeep, and fabrication. Support includes drilling and sampling operations, borehole/well logging, maintenance and plugging, observation well installations, water level measure­ment, seismic/geophysical field support, and earthquake station installation and maintenance.

The person in this position will be required to become a proficient driller operating all the KGS drilling units. Guidance in achieving this high level of proficiency will be provided by the Senior Field Advisor under the oversight and direct supervision of the Section Lead. With the current level of drilling and sampling undertaken at the KGS, obtaining this training/experience might take several years. During this period and beyond, when not engaged in drilling or sampling activities, a great deal of independence and direction will be provided to become familiar and experienced participating in geophysical surveys, water level measurement projects, instrument installation, and fabrication of specialized equipment and tools. Prior experience with drilling or use/maintenance of heavy equipment is expected and required. Candidates who enjoy working outdoors and shop work (e.g. machining, woodworking, maintenance, or fabrication) and want a long-term, secure, and stable career in this field with a great deal of latitude are encouraged to apply.

The Kansas Geological Survey (KGS) Exploration Services (ES) section develops and uses several investigative methods to provide information about the subsurface, using both invasive and non-invasive approaches with a focus on higher resolution and accuracy while reducing cost.

The ES section provides drilling in support of water, energy, and basic subsurface research. It also runs a program designed to monitor changes and identify regional trends in the High Plains, Dakota, and alluvial aquifers, measuring about 1,380 wells in 47 central and western Kansas counties. As well, the ES section is responsible for installation, maintenance, and collection of data from earthquake recording stations in Kansas—both permanent stations and several temporary networks—to detect and analyze seismic activity.

For further information about the Kansas Geological Survey visit our website:

Job Description

80% Drilling and Sampling

  • Maintain and expand operational capabilities of KGS drilling, plugging, and logging equipment and techniques.
  • Supervise one helper/assistant, maintaining peak efficiency and safety.
  • Oversee/participate in mobilizing and demobilizing for drilling, plugging, and logging operations.
  • Maintain and enhance drilling, logging, and plugging skills; independently design and complete drilling and/or sampling operations as requested by KGS scientists.
  • Manage drill site and assume responsibility for deliverables. Assume responsibility for drill site operations, both safety and product quality/quantity.
  • Maintain accurate and up-to-date records of workload and projects.
  • Schedule and execute services in support of scientists throughout the KGS.
  • Work with outside agencies to complete tasks associated with KGS research or service.
  • Maintain and record inventory of necessary supplies and tools related to drilling/sampling activities.
  • Operate logging equipment.
  • Supervise drill helper, taking responsibility for safety of people and equipment on drill site.
  • Develop field drilling schedules that meet needs of scientist, supervisor, and affected field support staff.

10% Geophysical and Water Level Program Technical Support

  • Participate in annual water level measurement program.
  • Participate in geophysical field work as part of the seismic crew.
  • Provide a range of field support to KGS scientists. Examples include: landowner search, borehole monitoring, borehole logging, utility clearance, and field contractor oversight.
  • Assist with acquiring and maintaining a high level of proficiency with DGPS (Digital GPS) survey equipment.
  • Assist with inventory of necessary supplies and tools for the geophysical and water level programs.

10% Earthquake Research Support

  • Assist with mobilization/demobilization, site preparation, locating, preparing, permitting, and installing and troubleshooting earthquake stations.
  • Provide landowner identifications, contact landowners, and secure permissions as well as routine contact and interaction to maintain high level of awareness and buy in. Coordinate with other staff to ensure inventory of necessary supplies and tools for site installation and maintenance are readily available.
  • Perform periodic visits to installation sites for equipment welfare checks, troubleshooting, and routine maintenance, likely involving a significant number of self-driven miles to remote Kansas location.

Required Qualifications

  1. High school diploma/GED and eight years of combined work experience below OR Associate’s degree with some science, environmental, automotive, hydraulic, welding technology, or related courses and six years of combined work experience below OR Bachelor’s degree in geoscience or related field with four years of demonstrated work experience below:

Demonstrable work experiencein one or more of the following categories:

  • Operation of drilling/sampling units
  • Mechanic work (vehicle/equipment repair)
  • Metal fabrication (including welding and cutting)
  • Heavy equipment operation for farm or construction work
  1. Good organizational, communication, and record-keeping skills as evidenced by application materials.

Position Requirements:

  1. Valid, current, and unrestricted driver’s license. Ability to obtain Kansas Class A CDL within 6 months of hire using KGS vehicles.This CDL position is subject to drug and/or alcohol testing under the authority of the State of Kansas Alcohol and Controlled Substance Program. The selected candidate will be required to pass a pre-duty Non-DOT drug test as a condition of employment in this position. Individuals employed in a position requiring a CDL can be selected for random testing during their employment.
  2. Ability to be away from home base for around ten days at a time, averaging 110 days per year.
  3. Ability to work outdoors in challenging conditions for extended periods while performing repetitive and labor-intensive tasks over periods of several days.
  4. Ability to lift and move up to 95 pounds (sack of Portland cement, for example) short distances.
  5. Ability to work independently and make decisions with remote guidance.
  6. Ability to come up with innovative or unique solutions to problems involving heavy equipment at risk in real time

Preferred Qualifications

  1. College degree in Geoscience, Environmental Science, geoscience-related Engineering, and/or Automotive, Hydraulic, Drilling, or Welding technology.
  2. Experience working independently and making decisions with remote consultation as evidenced by work experience and references.
  3. Experience leading projects and supervising personnel.
  4. Two or more years of geoscience or environmental work experience.
  5. Demonstrable geoscience-related fieldwork experience.
  6. Demonstrable work experience at a drilling site (rotary, auger, core, direct-push) and hydraulic systems maintenance and repair.
  7. Sample collection and preparation experience.
  8. Borehole logging, water level measurement, digital GPS, seismic survey experience.
  9. Data collection experience, particularly involving boreholes.
  10. Experience with electrical and/or assembly of electronic or scientific equipment.
  11. Design and fabrication skills with a basic knowledge of shop tools and shop safety as evidenced by academic or work experience.
  12. Kansas Class “A” commercial driver’s license with combination vehicle driving experience.
  13. Computer literacy in Windows-based programs.

Contact Information to Applicants

Annette Delaney, Kansas Geological Survey, or 785-864-2152

Additional Candidate Instruction

Complete the University of Kansas Unclassified Professional Staff profile and upload the required material:

  1. Cover letter addressing the required and preferred qualifications and position requirements.
  2. Resume.
  3. Contact information for three professional references.
  4. Unofficial college transcripts to determine education requirement, if applicable.

Application review begins January 13, 2020,and will continue until a qualified pool of applicants is received. For best consideration apply by the review date above.

Advertised Salary Range

$45,000 or greater, commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Application Review Begins


Anticipated Start Date


Work Location

University of Kansas - Lawrence





FLSA Status


Employee Class

U-Unclassified Professional Staff

Work Schedule

8a.m - 5p.m Monday - Friday

Job Family



The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university's programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access,, Room 1082, Dole Human Development Center, 1000 Sunnyside Avenue, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY 9 for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas

Kansas Geological Survey


Lawrence, KS
66045 USA