Assistant Research Network Engineer/Research Network Engineer/Senior Research Network Engineer

Integrated Cyberinfrastructure Directorate

*** search extended until October 27, 2021 ***

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign provides supercomputing and advanced digital resources for the nation's science enterprise. At NCSA, University of Illinois faculty, staff, students and collaborators from around the globe use these resources to address research challenges for the benefit of science and society. NCSA has been advancing many of the world's industry giants for over 35 years by bringing industry, researchers and students together to solve grand challenges at rapid speed and scale.

NCSA is currently seeking one or more Network Engineer(s) who will provide scientific and research network engineering in support of projects and research which can include elements such as multi-site, multi-vendor environment that leverages High Performance Networking, and other transports to interconnect its IP network with the world over various dedicated Wide Area Network (WAN) links that span the research computing community. The NCSA network evolves continually, incorporating innovative technologies that enhance the Center’s ability to further research in many domains, as well as supporting research into new networking technologies. Consequently, this position leverages knowledge of network architecture, measurement, analytics, and creative troubleshooting. Performing in a team, the application of these skills results in the diagnosis and resolution of complex problems between these components.

As a Research Network Engineer, you will interact with people in a wide range of educational, scientific, and engineering disciplines to design, develop, and support advanced networking in areas such as multi-messenger astronomy, healthcare innovation, industry applications, and computational science. Creativity, independence, a strong work ethic, as well as coordination with the project principal investigator(s) will be critical. As a Research Network Engineer, you will also represent the group at meetings, give presentations at conferences or other venues, and contribute to publications and grant proposals.

NCSA is committed to increasing the diversity of the campus community. Candidates who have experience working with a diverse range of faculty, staff, and students, and who can contribute to the climate of inclusivity are encouraged to apply.

Key responsibilities

Assistant Research Network Engineer

Research Network Development:

  • Track research activity in relevant fields both programmatic and domain specific
  • Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses between varieties of novel approaches to research and scientific software development problems
  • Plan full lifecycle engagement of the networking hardware and software that comprise the NCSA high-performance research network: design, deployment, and monitoring
  • Gather requirements and input to evaluate and integrate technical recommendations to address project specific needs and critical technological challenges
  • Support and troubleshoot the fault-tolerant, high-performance research data network and related network services that interconnect all NCSA systems and research computing resources to end-users and researchers

Research Communication:

  • Present research network documentation for use in end-user documentation, project colleagues, research grant proposals, and other NCSA published works to NCSA groups and Principal Investigators (PIs)
  • Support publications, technical reports, and documentation
  • Collaborate with external research and networking groups to further the strategic mission of NCSA
  • Maintain technical involvement in cutting-edge, multi-institution networking research projects and conferences; function as a representative of NCSA within the scientific computing community in that capacity

Research Network Innovation

  • Continually advance skills and knowledge regarding NCSA duties by researching on-line, with periodicals or by means of attending lectures or conferences
  • Apply innovative research network understanding to technical networking opportunities
Research Network Engineer & Senior Research Network Engineer

These include the key responsibilities for the Assistant Research Network Engineer with the addition of the following:

Research Network Development:

  • Interpret scientific domain knowledge to architect and design creative networks to help researchers address heterogenous problems, provide consulting expertise to researchers across a variety of domain sciences to leverage synergies across projects, and design and support shared cyberinfrastructure network to support a broad range of communities
  • Architect and evolve the fault-tolerant, high-performance research data network and related network services that interconnect all NCSA systems and research computing resources to end-users and researchers
  • Innovative full lifecycle engagement of the networking hardware and software that comprise the NCSA high-performance research network: design, deployment, and monitoring

Research Communication:

  • Contribute to publications, technical reports, and documentation.

Required education and experience

Assistant Research Network Engineer
  • BA/BS degree in computer science, electrical engineering, or related field required. Alternative degree fields may be accepted if accompanied by an equivalent amount of experience (depending on nature and depth of experience as it relates to current NCSA business needs)
  • One year of experience in network engineering; this can be a combination of course level network engineering, internship experience, and/or professional network engineering experience
  • At least 1 year of experience in relevant network engineer role
  • Six months of experience researching, presenting, and/or publishing technical projects or papers in a professional or academic setting
Research Network Engineer

These include the requirements of the Assistant Research Network Engineer with the addition of the following:

  • At least 3 years of experience in relevant network engineer role
Senior Research Network Engineer

These include the requirements for the Research Network Engineer with the addition of the following:

  • At least 6 years of experience in relevant network engineer role.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead projects and coordinate with relevant internal stakeholders with a degree of independence

Preferred experience

Assistant Research Network Engineer

Required Education and Experience:

  • Hands-on experience with Juniper, Arista, and Cisco
  • Familiarity with DNS and DHCP administration in a Unix environment
  • Familiarity with IPv4 and IPv6 deployment and/or operational experience
  • Knowledge of optical Ethernet concepts (e.g. single-mode and multi-mode fiber, transceiver types)
  • Familiarity with network automation
  • Familiarity with configuring and operating hardware and software (Linux/Unix) firewalls
  • Familiarity with Unix shell and Unix troubleshooting and network utilities
  • TCP performance tuning experience (including related Linux/Unix kernel tuning parameters)
  • Familiarity with server administration, both hardware and software, on various platforms
  • Experience with various programming and scripting languages (e.g. Python, Perl, etc)
  • Ability to clearly communicate results and their importance (verbally and in writing)
  • Ability to provide input for reports, presentations, and grant proposals
Research Network Engineer

This is the same as the preferred experience for the Assistant Research Programmer with the addition of the following:

  • Familiarity with Unix shell and Unix troubleshooting and network utilities
  • Experience with dynamic routing protocols (e.g. OSPF, IS-IS, BGP)
  • Experience with DNS and DHCP administration in a Unix environment
  • Hands-on experience with many operating systems (e.g. BSD, Linux, OS X, and Microsoft Windows)
  • IPv6 deployment and/or operational experience
  • Knowledge of the public telecommunications network
  • Experience configuring and operating hardware firewalls
  • Experience with site-to-site and remote-access virtual private networks
  • Working knowledge of DWDM optical transport systems
  • Working knowledge of optical Ethernet concepts (e.g. single-mode and multi-mode fiber, transceiver types)
  • Familiarity with network automation
Senior Research Network Engineer

These include the preferred experience of the Research Network Engineer with the addition of the following:

  • Proficiency with Unix shell and Unix troubleshooting and network utilities
  • Competency with Juniper, Arista, and Cisco equipment
  • Proficiency with dynamic routing protocols (e.g. OSPF, IS-IS, BGP)
  • Hands-on experience with troubleshooting operating systems (e.g. BSD, Linux, OS X, and Microsoft Windows)
  • TCP performance tuning experience (including related Linux/Unix kernel tuning parameters)
  • Experience with optical Ethernet concepts (e.g. single-mode and multi-mode fiber, transceiver types)
  • Experience with server administration, both hardware and software, on various platforms
  • Experience with network automation
Application Details and Process

This is a regular academic professional position at NCSA and is an annually renewable, 12/12, 100%-time appointment with regular University benefits. Salary is commensurate with experience and start date will be as soon as possible after the close date of the search. Applicants must possess required education and experience by start date of position. Interviews and hires may occur before the closing date; however, all applications received by the closing date will receive full consideration.

For further information regarding our application procedures, you may visit www.ncsa.illinois.edu or email NCSA-HR@illinois.edu.

To apply, please create your candidate profile at jobs.illinois.edu and upload your cover letter and CV/resume by the close date October 27, 2021. Contact information for three references must be included on the application. For full consideration, candidates must complete the Hiretouch application process by the above date.

University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer. Convictions are not a bar to employment. The University of Illinois System requires candidates selected for hire to disclose any documented finding of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment and to authorize inquiries to current and former employers regarding findings of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment. For more information, visit Policy on Consideration of Sexual Misconduct in Prior Employment. As a qualifying federal contractor, the University of Illinois System uses E-Verify to verify employment eligibility.

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit http://go.illinois.edu/EEO.

For further information regarding our application procedures, you may visit www.ncsa.illinois.edu or email NCSA-HR@illinois.edu.