Winter Science Jobs at Palmer Station


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  • #1413
    Sciencetech
    Keymaster

    All three science support positions at Palmer Station may be coming open this winter, and the jobs are posted on the LMCO website. Interviews will be conducted very soon or are on-going now.

    [s:2fvmhcyg]Assistant Lab Manager[/s:2fvmhcyg]

    [s:2fvmhcyg]Instrument Technician[/s:2fvmhcyg]

    [s:2fvmhcyg]Research Associate[/s:2fvmhcyg]

    All positions now filled.

    #11796
    spidey
    Participant

    Hmmm,
    But I would take it they all need lab experience and not just broad based technical and figure it out skills?
    -Pete

    #11797
    Sciencetech
    Keymaster

    The Assistant Lab Manager and RA definitely need lab experience.

    The instrument tech should have lab experience, but electro-mechanical and electronic repair skills with lab equipment are probably more important.

    I think the sysadmin position, and perhaps the network engineer, may be coming open for the winter too. But they are hired through GHG, and I don’t really know what’s going on there.

    #11798
    gosouth
    Participant

    I just noticed that status of the RA position is now listed as Canceled (rather than the usual Open or Closed). Any insight into this status? The other two positions are still listed as Open at this point.

    Thanks!

    #11799
    Sciencetech
    Keymaster

    Last winter’s RA says he’s coming back. They may still want to hire an alternate.

    #11800
    gosouth
    Participant

    Got it. Thanks for the info!

    #11801
    bsherylak7
    Member

    Thanks, Sciencetech, for all of the information you provide. I’ve been applying on and off and lurking on various boards for almost 20 years. Hopefully, this will be my year to get down there.

    #11802
    Sciencetech
    Keymaster

    Welcome to the board bsherylak7!

    Spidey, here’s the sysadmin job.

    #11803
    Snake6
    Member

    I applied for the sysadmin job when it was first posted but haven’t heard anything back yet, so I am doubtful.

    Also is there scuba diving at palmer in the winter? I am currently taking my divemaster class, if you get an IT job or whatever, can you pick up additional responsibilities as divemaster or such if you have the qualifications? I assume the station is to small to have a full time divemaster and rescue divers etc?

    #11804
    Sciencetech
    Keymaster

    @Snake6 wrote:

    I applied for the sysadmin job when it was first posted but haven’t heard anything back yet, so I am doubtful.

    Hiring is goofy. If the job is still posted, there is a chance.

    It’s high season right now. At this time of the year the hiring managers may be preoccupied and/or deployed, and it may take a while for them to start reviewing applications.

    Also is there scuba diving at palmer in the winter? I am currently taking my divemaster class, if you get an IT job or whatever, can you pick up additional responsibilities as divemaster or such if you have the qualifications? I assume the station is to small to have a full time divemaster and rescue divers etc?

    You’ve hit a nerve. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. Yes, there is diving at Palmer, sometimes into the winter, depending on the science events. I’ve been diving for 28 years, a dive master for 20, and worked as a commercial diver; I have certs from multiple agencies, including drysuit, ice diving, hyperbaric operations, DAN, NOLS/WFR, USC Emergency Dive Accident Management, NOAA MPIC, STIO, blah blah blah. I have begged to dive here and at McMurdo. What do I get to do? Tank fill monkey, and occasional dive tender.

    The bottom line is that experience doesn’t matter. Unless you have a reason for diving, the answer is no. I’ve decided that I’ll either have to get on with a science group that does diving, or pay for an Antarctic cruise that includes diving. Maybe you’ll have better luck.

    #11805
    Snake6
    Member

    Not to derail the topic, but what would happen in the case of a dive emergency then? If a diver goes missing, how do you conduct an effective search if your rescue divers never dive? Seems kind of reckless. Couldn’t you just bring your down your own gear and dive on your time off?

    #11806
    Sciencetech
    Keymaster

    @Snake6 wrote:

    Not to derail the topic, but what would happen in the case of a dive emergency then? If a diver goes missing, how do you conduct an effective search if your rescue divers never dive? Seems kind of reckless. Couldn’t you just bring your down your own gear and dive on your time off?

    Emergencies are handled on the surface. Some diving, such as in overhead environments, may have a stand-by safety diver, but again the diver is part of the science dive team, not a rank-and-file crew member. All diving at Palmer is done with buddy pairs, dive tenders, and typically a live boat. If a buddy pair has a problem, their priority is to get safely to the surface.

    Diving on your own is very tempting, although that would earn you a one-way ticket off the Ice.

    #11807
    Iceman
    Member

    @Snake6 wrote:

    Not to derail the topic, but what would happen in the case of a dive emergency then? If a diver goes missing, how do you conduct an effective search if your rescue divers never dive? Seems kind of reckless. Couldn’t you just bring your down your own gear and dive on your time off?

    Snake if you ever get into the program, you will soon find out how highly regulated everything is, and what you (as a contractor) can and can not do. There’s lots of things workers would like/love to do during their free time at Palmer and McMurdo that is off limits.

    Like Glenn mentioned, there’s safety precautions built into the dive ops, be it at Palmer or McMurdo. And unless you are hired as a commercial diver for a specific project (i.e. fixing/creating the boat ramp like they did last fall at Palmer) or a part of a science group, you won’t be diving at Palmer or McMurdo. NSF has the last say on pretty much everything, especially who can and can not dive at their stations and all of the qualifications they feel one needs.

    The hard part of joining a science group, is that most of the divers in a science group are either Master’s/PhD students, post-docs, the PIs themselves or people married to the PIs that happen to work in the lab. It is very rare that a dive group will hire a seasonal research tech or specialist to help them with their dive operations. They usually have enough eager grad students to fill the very limited openings on the team.

    #11808
    thepooles98
    Keymaster

    And I’ll add, that by and large, while the chances of anything bad happening are pretty slim. A death or serious injury on the ice cuts right to the core of the entire population. As a group we tasked with not only watching out for ourselves, but also watching out for the safety of our friends and coworkers. Having your co worker get frostbite is as much your fault as his. Antarctica is a dangerous place. and the myriad of safety rules are there as much to protect everyone else from what would happens if one person gets hurt. A death or serious injury destroys the morale. As much as you think if you die or have an accident, it only affects you, you are wrong. Somebody will put their own safety on the line if you get into trouble, Most would prefer that never has to happen.
    Best to do like Glen said and take a private dive cruise and not put the station at risk.

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