Technical Project Specialist I

Iowa State University

Boone, IA

Position Information:
Position Title:
Technical Project Specialist I
Job Group:
Professional & Scientific
Required Minimum Qualifications:
Bachelor's degree
Preferred Qualifications:
Degree in Industrial Technology, Agricultural Systems Technology, Agricultural Engineering, or related field.
Experience with test fixture design and construction, including CAD, CNC and basic welding metal fabrication skills.
Experience with 12V wiring systems including electrical power, sensors, electronic data acquisition wiring.
Experience with common agricultural equipment.
Job Description:

The Digital Agriculture Innovations Team within the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering at Iowa State University is accepting applications for a Technical Project Specialist I who will be responsible for supporting agricultural machinery testing and evaluation programs. The ISU Digital Agriculture Innovation Team ( consists of professional staff and graduate students who work closely with agricultural industry partners to develop innovative technology solutions for agriculture. The team has a strong innovation record with over 30 patents and licensed technologies.

Daily responsibilities of this position will include: 1) experimental equipment and test fixture design and fabrication, 2) electrical wiring and verification testing of prototype equipment and instrumentation, 3) installation of basic hydraulic systems, 4) execution of prototype equipment test plans to produce high quality research data, and 5) sharing results with team partners through written and oral communication. This work will be completed in a highly collaborative team environment and will involve active machine testing both locally within Iowa and limited travel out-of-state. The successful candidate is expected to manage project scope and schedule and demonstrate strong independent leadership and time management skills. Supervision of undergraduate students to support project activities is expected.

The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to work independently; complete projects within a specified timeline; communicate effectively and provide technical leadership; and ensure a safe working environment. The successful candidate will possess strong problem solving skills, effective time management skills; excellent communication and organizational skills; and be detail oriented. The candidate will also be a motivated self-starter and possess the ability to conduct, document, and communicate research methods and results.

This position provides strong work diversity in a welcoming environment. Candidates that are detail oriented, organized, and value being on a strong team are encouraged to apply. All staff members are expected to interact collegially and maintain the highest standards of confidentiality, integrity, and ethics. The Digital Agriculture Innovations Team offers multiple opportunities for career growth and technical development for its employees.

Multiple positions are available and recruitment will be ongoing until all positions are filled. These are 2-year term positions with opportunity for renewal.

Example of Duties

  • Experimental equipment and test fixture design and fabrication. Including design of mechanical parts using CAD and fabrication of parts using standard metal fabrication tools.

  • Electrical wiring and verification testing of prototype equipment and instrumentation. Including designing wiring harnesses, assembly and testing of harnesses, verification of sensor reading using basic digital multimeter equipment, and validation of data files.

  • Design of basic hydraulic systems. Including selection, installation, and verification testing of hydraulic systems.

  • Execution of prototype equipment test plans to produce high quality research data. Including developing test plans to meet program requirements, managing physical test execution and related logistics, and documenting test results.

  • Sharing results with team partners through written and oral communication. Including engaging in team meetings and preparing materials for external clients.

Level Guidelines
• Individual contributor position with developing professional and/or technical skills working under immediate to general supervision
• Grasps professional-level knowledge and concepts of field while working in a progressive learning mode
• Works on problems and issues of somewhat limited scope
• Follows standard practices and procedures in analyzing situations or data for which answers are available or can be obtained
• Responds to inquiries and issues, escalating to manager or higher level workers as appropriate
• May lead projects of limited scope and complexity
• May provide guidance to students

Appointment Type:
Regular with Term Appointment (Fixed Term)
Proposed End Date or Length of Term:
Number of Months Employed Per Year:
12 Month Work Period
Time Type:
Full time
Pay Grade:
Application Instructions:

To apply for this position, please click on “Apply” and complete the Employment Application. Please be prepared to enter or attach the following:

1) Resume/Curriculum Vitae
2) Letter of Application/Cover Letter

If you have questions regarding this application process, please email or call 515-294-4800 or Toll Free: 1-877-477-7485.

Why Choose ISU?
Iowa State University is committed to fostering a workplace of belonging, where diversity is celebrated and equity is a core value. Our Iowa State Employees enjoy comprehensive health and work life benefits, including medical and dental; as well as:
• Retirement benefits including defined benefit and defined contribution plans
• Generous vacation, holiday and sick time and leave plans
• Onsite childcare (Ames, Iowa)
• Life insurance and long-term disability
• Flexible Spending Accounts
• Various voluntary benefits and discounts
• Employee Assistance Program
• Wellbeing program
• This job may also be eligible for flexible work schedules and flexible workplace options that may include flexible working hours and a hybrid working environment.

Original Posting Date:
January 30, 2023
Posting Close Date:
Job Requisition Number: