Ocean Career: Scripps Institution of Oceanography Research Technician

Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) at UC San Diego is one of the most important centers for global earth science research and education in the world.

Scripps scientists work to understand and protect the planet by investigating our oceans, Earth, and atmosphere to find solutions to our greatest environmental challenges.

Supporting SIO, Shipboard Technical Support (STS) provides specialized expertise, personnel, instrumentation, and support services to scientists that use oceanographic research vessels. STS was formed in 1984 by the consolidation of several technical support groups from various SIO academic departments. Currently, STS is comprised of a) the Research Technician Group (ResTechs), b) Computing Resources (STS­CR), c) Oceanographic Data Facility (ODF), d) Shipboard Geophysical Group (SGG), and e) CLIVAR and Carbon Hydrographic Data Office (CCHDO). Each group provides a distinct set of services and equipment for a variety of research missions. Incumbent functions as the lead marine technician and supervisor for all technicians assigned to the Research Technicians Group within STS. Maintains training records and make recommendations to STS Manager when hiring new staff. Assigns work to direct reports including cruise assignments and maintenance of group equipment for research cruises. Assess technical support needs for department research cruises. Coordinate group activities with STS supervisors for project specific technical support.

While at sea, operates and maintains underway data instruments including digital echosounders, towed magnetometers, coring equipment, rock dredges, trawls, plankton nets, and uncontaminated seawater systems. Operates and maintains CTD and XBT systems. Assists with ROV systems. Oversees deck operations, equipment stowage, and handling of scientific samples. Assists with management of data during cruise and archiving of data at end of cruise. Assists with ship to shore communications via voice, email, and data transfers.


  • Undergraduate degree in natural or physical science or engineering and four (4) years providing technical support on research ships, including one (1) year of supervisory experience; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Proficient in oceanographic data collection and processing techniques.
  • Demonstrated supervisory skills in hiring of new employees, salary actions, terminations, and performance ratings.
  • Strong computer competency. Experience with Windows and Linux operating systems.
  • Working knowledge of research discipline, principles, concepts, analysis and / or operations being conducted at field / remote sites.
  • Proven ability to operate large mechanical devices, e.g., cranes, forklifts, and winches.
  • Knowledge to effectively plan, organize, and carry out major research expeditions.
  • Experience with budget preparation and monitoring, record-keeping, and equipment inventory control.
  • Demonstrated skills in interpersonal communication, motivation of staff and team building.
  • Understanding of shipping and customs export/import regulations and documentation including shipping of hazardous materials.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of hazardous materials handling and lab safety.


  • Must obtain a Transportation Workers Identification (TWIC) issued by the Transportation Security Administration.
  • Must be capable of lifting and moving moderate weights in port and at sea.
  • Must be physically fit to perform duties without causing risk to self or others.

Our employees enjoy competitive compensation packages and educational opportunities in a diverse, stimulating workforce. This position is also eligible for full:

  • Health/Dental/Vision Insurance
  • Vacation/Holidays
  • Life Insurance
  • UC Retirement Plan

Pay Transparency Act

Annual Full Pay Range: $48,900 - $102,300 (will be prorated if the appointment percentage is less than 100%)

Learn more about this opportunity and how to apply.

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