Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration Psychologist in Lowell, Massachusetts

Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration
1 vacancy in the following location:
  • Lowell, MA
Work Schedule is Full Time - Excepted Service NTE NTE 2 YEARS

Opened Thursday 10/13/2016 (10 day(s) ago)

** Closes Thursday 10/27/2016 (4 day(s) away)

Job Overview

Vacancy Identification Number (VIN): 1824367


OUR MISSION: To fulfill President Lincoln's promise – "To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan" – by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans. How would you like to become a part of a team providing compassionate care to Veterans?

As a VA professional, your opportunities are endless. Not only is it the largest, most technologically advanced integrated health care system in the Nation, but we also provide many other services to Veterans through the Benefits Administration and National Cemeteries. VA professionals feel good about their careers and their ability to balance work and home life. VA offers generous paid time off and a variety of predictable and flexible scheduling opportunities. For more information on the Department of Veterans Affairs, go to **VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply. The health related positions in VA are covered by Title 38, and are not covered by the Schedule A excepted appointment authority.


This is an Excepted Appointment, not-to-exceed 2 years, but may be extended up to 4 years. Temporary appointments are non-status, non-permanent appointments of limited duration.

The Psychologist position is located at the Lowell Vet Center in Lowell, Massachusetts and will provide counseling to eligible active duty service members, veterans, and their families of the Vet Center program. Readjustment counseling includes individual and group counseling over issues of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and related psychological difficulties, marital and family issues, substance abuse, employment, military sexual trauma, homelessness, bereavement, and other issues impacting upon successful readjustment. This task is accomplished in collaboration with other members of the Vet Center or other interdisciplinary treatment teams both within the Department of Veterans Affairs, community agencies and the Department of Defense as appropriate. The duties of the position include but are not limited to:

  • completes psycho-social assessments and military history to identify problem areas
  • develops a unique treatment plan that reflects a course of therapeutic intervention that will address the needs identified in the assessment
  • maintains and exercises an effective resource data base that is used to address the needs of the client, which may be better served by programs external to the Vet Center
  • acts as an advocate when it serves the best interest of the active duty service member, veteran and their families without fostering dependency and preserving the right of the client to exercise choice
  • assesses whether a client is of harm to self or others and provides further psychiatric assessment if necessary
  • provides education or facilitates education to elements external to the Vet Center
  • ensures good communication and clinical treatment to patients that are shared with other health care providers as required
  • exercises a variety of individual and group counseling techniques that are evidence based in the treatment of readjustment counseling problems and demonstrate good clinical practice

Work Schedule:8:00 am to 4:30 pm (The employee may be required to work other than normal duty hours to include evenings, weekends, and/or holidays. The employee will be required to safely operate a government vehicle under a myriad of conditions to support mission.)

Functional Statement Title/#: Psychologist

Travel Required
  • Occasional Travel
  • In support of direct client care, outreach events and/or training
Relocation Authorized
  • No
Job Requirements
Key Requirements
  • Must pass a pre-employment examination
  • Must be proficient in written and spoken English
  • Designated and-or Random Drug Testing required
  • Background and-or Security Investigation required
  • Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959.
  • Must have a current/valid driver's license

Basic Requirements:

  • U.S. citizenship.
  • Education

(1) Have a doctoral degree in psychology from a graduate program in psychology accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA). The specialty area of the degree must be consistent with the assignment for which the applicant is to be employed.


(2) Have successfully completed a professional psychology internship training program that has been accredited by APA. Exceptions: (1) new VHA psychology internship programs that are in the process of applying for APA accreditation are acceptable in fulfillment of the internship requirement, provided that such programs were sanctioned by the VHA Central Office Program Director for Psychology and the VHA Central Office of Academic Affiliations at the time that the individual was an intern and (2) VHA facilities who offered full one-year pre-doctoral internships prior to PL 96-151 (pre-1979) are considered to be acceptable in fulfillment of the internship requirement.

  • Licensure.Hold a full, current, and unrestricted license to practice psychology at the doctoral level in a State, Territory, Commonwealth of the United States (e.g., Puerto Rico), or the District of Columbia.

The Secretary may waive the requirement of licensure for an individual psychologist for a period not to exceed 2 years from the date of employment on the condition that such a psychologist provide care only under the supervision of a psychologist who is so licensed. Non-licensed psychologists who otherwise meet the eligibility requirements may be given a temporary appointment as a graduate psychologist under the authority of 38 U.S.C. § 7405 (a) (1) (D). Failure to obtain licensure during that period is justification for termination of the temporary appointment. This may result in termination of employment.

  • English Language Proficiency:Psychologists must be proficient in spoken and written English

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

Grade Determinations:


Experience.None beyond the basic requirements.


Experience.In addition to the basic requirements at the GS-11 level, at least 1 year of experience as a professional psychologist equivalent to the next lower grade level. Individuals assigned as GS-12 psychologists may be in the process of obtaining licensure at the independent practice level. If unlicensed, the individual must be supervised by a licensed psychologist and the experience and supervision must meet the standards for psychology licensure. In addition, the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs:

Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  1. Knowledge of, and ability to apply, a wide range of professional psychological theories and assessment methods to a variety of patient populations.

  2. Ability to develop coherent treatment strategies.

  3. Ability to incorporate new clinical procedures.


Licensure.Hold a full, current, and unrestricted license to practice psychology at the doctoral level in a State, Territory, Commonwealth of the United States (e.g., Puerto Rico), or the District of Columbia.

Experience.In addition to the experience requirements at the GS-12 level, at least 1 additional year of experience as a psychologist equivalent to the next lower grade level. In addition the candidate must demonstrate the following KSAs:

Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  1. Knowledge of, and ability to apply, advanced professional psychological theories and techniques to the full range of patient populations.

  2. Ability to provide professional advice and consultation in areas related to professional psychology and behavioral health.

  3. Knowledge of clinical research literature.

References: VA Handbook 5005/15, Part II, Appendix G18, Psychologist QUALIFICATION STANDARD, dated March 17, 2006. This can be found in the local Human Resources Office.

Note: Only education or degrees recognized by the U.S. Department of Education from accredited colleges, universities, schools, or institutions may be used to qualify for Federal employment. You can verify your education here: If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education.

Physical Requirements:The work is primarily sedentary. It may require some lifting (10-2-lbs.) occasionally. Reaching above shoulder; Frequent keyboarding (4-7 hours per day); Sitting (4-7 hours per day); Walking (up to 6 hours per day); Standing (up to 8 hours per day); Infrequent climbing/descending of stairs; Some bending; Ability for rapid mental and muscular coordination simultaneously; Correctable near sighted and far sighted vision; Hearing (Aid permitted).

Security Clearance


Additional Information
What To Expect Next

After we receive application packages (including all required documents) and the vacancy announcement closes, we will review applications to ensure qualification and eligibility requirements are met. During our review, if your résumé and application package do not support your questionnaire answers, we will adjust your rating accordingly. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email (if provided); otherwise, applicants will receive a notification letter via the U.S. Postal Service. Referred applicants will be notified as such and may be contacted directly by the hiring office for an interview. All referred applicants receive a final notification once a selection decision has been made.

You may check the status of your application at any time by logging into your USAJOBS account and clicking on "Application Status." For a more detailed update of your status, click on "more information." Information regarding applicant notification points can be found in the USAJobs Resource Center.


VA offers a comprehensive benefits package. This link provides an overview of the benefits currently offered:

Receiving Service Credit for Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave: Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee.

Other Information

It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.

This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status.

Salary Range: $64,862.00 to $120,187.00 / Per Year

Series & Grade: GS-0180-00/00

Supervisory Status: No

Control Number: 453264600

Job Announcement Number: UL-17-MKD-1824367