Power Plant Operator-Senior
Deadline for Applications is 01/24/2021

Code: 16898 Posted: 01/08/2021

The University of Wisconsin-Parkside invites applications for the position of Power Plant Operator - Senior.

This is a responsible position in a large and highly complex Heating & Chilling Plant. The Heating & Chilling Plant provides steam to 10 campus buildings and chilled water to 9 campus buildings, which are inter-connected by a series of underground tunnels and conduits. General supervision is received from the Power Plant Superintendent. On shift, the Power Plant Operator – Senior is solely responsible for the following: total operation and maintenance of the entire plant in a safe and efficient manner, assistance in emergency situations, emergency repairs, and performance of any other duties associated with the operation of a complex heating and chilling plant. 

Hours of work: Primarily 3rd (11:00 PM – 7:00 AM) shift. Occasional 1st (7:00 AM – 3:00 PM) or 2nd (3:00 PM – 11:00 PM) shift. Random shifts, 12 hour shifts, repeated/successive shifts, or overtime may be required.

Essential Job Functions

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

20% A. Operate Boilers and Boiler Controls – to maintain proper steam pressure, water levels and other operating parameters. 

  1. Light off, operate, and shut down high-pressure watertube and firetube boilers on gas and oil.
  2. Perform boiler fuel changes from gas-to-oil and oil-to-gas.
  3. Monitor control systems, observe changes, and make any necessary adjustments to maintain the most safe and efficient operation.
  4. Operate combustion analysis equipment.

20%     B. Perform operational duties

  1. Exercise sound judgment as to when boilers, chillers, and auxiliary equipment should be used.
  2. Complete daily preventative maintenance, and duties such as: checking oil levels, soot blowing, tank blow downs, instrument calibration, packing adjustment, etc.
  3. Monitor the MetaSys™ (computerized energy management system) computer. Start and stop campus systems as needed. Contact appropriate personnel as needed.
  4. Analyze and assess trouble situations. Determine when emergencies exist and take immediate steps to resolve.
  5. Exercise the authority to call repair personnel, as necessary.
  6. Establish communication with preceding and succeeding shifts to discuss problems in English language to assure a smooth transition between shifts.
  7. Understand language and procedures in operating computers, and computer-associated/computer-controlled equipment.

15% C. Maintenance of Heating & Chilling Plant equipment

  1. Perform preventative maintenance of all plant equipment. Inspect equipment, record and analyze data, take appropriate preventative, predictive, and corrective action.
  2. Disassemble, inspect, replace defective parts and reassemble machinery such as compressors, motors, pumps, mechanical controllers, etc.
  3. Packing of pumps and valves.
  4. Installation and repair of piping systems.
  5. Inspection, repair, removal and replacement of boiler tiles, refractory and insulation.
  6. Clean boiler firesides and watersides.
  7. Turbining of boiler tubes.
  8. Alignment of pump and driver shafts.
  9. Inspect, repair or replace equipment parts such as, but not limited to, bearings, seals, belts, hoses, valves, impellers, wear rings, filters, diaphragms, gaskets, piping / fittings, etc.
  10. Remove, repair or replace insulation.
  11. Paint equipment, as required.
  12. Change oil and grease, and/or lubricate equipment, as required.
  13. Erect and dismantle scaffolding.
  14. Fabricate safety guards and shields.
  15. Check and repair steam traps.
  16. Inspect and clean cooling tower and sump.

10%    D. Start, operate, and shut down auxiliary equipment

  1. Equipment not limited to: air compressors, air dryers, diesel-driven electrical generator, centrifugal and positive-displacement pumps, gas systems, oil systems, pneumatic systems, hydraulic systems, softeners, dealkalizers, electrical switchgear, etc.
  2. Monitor auxiliary equipment and make operating adjustments as conditions change.

10% E. Operate water chillers to maintain proper cooling and dehumidification

  1. Start, operate, and shut down water chillers and associated equipment.
  2. Monitor pressure gauges, thermometers, and chiller control systems.
  3. Adjust chiller instrumentation to meet campus demand as conditions change.

10% F. Miscellaneous Tasks and Responsibilities

Adhere to plant policies and procedures.

  1. Operate Heating & Chilling Plant computers; input and retrieve data, and produce & understand plant reports, as required.
  2. Perform janitorial duties, as assigned.
  3. Complete assigned equipment cleaning.
  4. Maintain good public relations.
  5. Take phone messages and appropriate action on them.
  6. Leave clear and concise written messages in English language.
  7. Enter notation in English language of irregular operations, electrical outages, problems, etc. in operations logbook.
  8. Respond to fire and security alarms and take appropriate action.
  9. Respond with appropriate and timely action during power outages. Switch from normal power to emergency power and back, using established procedures.
  10. Assist other Power Plant Operator – Seniors, as required.
  11. General housekeeping and office duties
  12. Minor snow removal
  13. Miscellaneous tasks, as required

5% G. Perform water testing and analysis

  1. Collect samples of boiler water, chilled water, tower water, condensate, feed water, softened water, and dealkalized water.
  2. Using established methods, test water for corrosion potential, pH, bacterial and algae growth, chemical residuals, etc.
  3. Select treatment chemicals, treatment chemical dosages, and blowdowns to maintain desired water chemistry.
  4. Utilize personal protective equipment (PPE) and proper safety practices in operating chemical treatment systems and handling treatment chemicals.

5% H. Maintenance of controls

  1. Troubleshoot and replace electrical controls and relays.
  2. Calibrate gauges and thermometers.
  3. Service, calibrate, and blow down transmitters.
  4. Calibrate controllers to maintain maximum efficiency.
  5. Calibrate O2 sensors.
  6. Change O2 sensors, filters and traps on combustion analyzer.
  7. Adjust liquid level controllers.
  8. Troubleshoot, calibrate, and replace, as necessary: solid-state circuit boards, signal isolators, solenoids, switches, actuators, regulators, recorders, surge suppressors, totalizers, sensors, indicators, meters, monitors, displays, amplifiers, modules, signal converters, terminals, power conditioners, orifice plates, etc.

5% I. Tool Utilization

  1. Applies knowledge and skills to select proper tools for efficient use and job performance
  2. Equipment to be used on the job: (F - Frequently, O – Occasionally, R – Rarely)

a. Tools:

      F – Electric drill, taps & dies, brooms & brushes.

      O – Dial indicator, oxyacetylene torch, hoist & jack, Vernier calipers, packing

      extractors, dead weight tester, paint rollers & brushes

      R – Drill sharpener

b. Large Machinery:

      O – Drill press

      R – Office vehicle, surface grinder, horizontal milling machine

c. Electrical Equipment:

      F – Pipe cutter & threader, bench grinder, vacuum cleaner, computer         

      O – Sawzall, tube cleaner (boiler & chiller), floor buffer

d. Chemicals:

O – glass cleaner, white out, general surface cleaner, lubricating oils & greases, fuel oils, natural gas, LPG (propane), boiler & chilled water treatment chemicals, water testing reagents, boiler refractory patching materials, ceramic fiber blanket, paints & thinners, penetrants, anti-seize, solder, fluxes, oil-dry, teflon joint sealants, degreasers, mineral spirits, industrial liquid detergents.

Essential Knowledge And Abilities

  • Ability to communicate verbally, reading and in writing using the English language to give, receive, read, and write detailed instructions
  • Interpersonal skills necessary to interact effectively with the public, coworkers, and other University workers
  • Sufficient long-term memory to be able to recall and apply policies, procedures and regulations
  • Sufficient short-term memory to be able to return to and accurately complete tasks after interruptions
  • Knowledge of emergency Heating & Chilling Plant procedures and reactions
  • Knowledge of Heating & Chilling Plant equipment and system operations
  • Ability to communicate emergency situations with clarity in the English language
  • Ability to attend work on a regular basis except for leave provided by the labor contract or law
  • Ability to learn and perform all essential job functions safely while on shift, with little direct
  • supervision after training
  • Sufficient manual dexterity to operate office equipment, hand tools, machinery, and maintenance equipment
  • Ability to read, interpret and understand equipment manuals and blueprints
  • Possess a high degree of mechanical aptitude
  • Ability to deal with stressful situations
  • Initiative to work productively for sustained periods without supervision
  • Demonstrated ability to follow established procedures and safely operate equipment using those procedures
  • Demonstrate good decision-making skills
  • Knowledge of mechanical theory
  • Knowledge of water chemistry and control
  • Demonstrated ability to perform preventative, predictive, and corrective maintenance, and make repairs / adjustments / replacements to components, equipment, and systems
  • Demonstrated ability to work evening and nights shifts, and/or to work random / successive shifts and overtime
  • Demonstrated ability and mobility to perform established complex operational procedures under established time constraints
  • Knowledge of basic safety rules and signs, including Safety Data Sheets (SDS), confined space entry, hoisting & rigging, and lockout/tagout (LOTO) procedures
  • Responsible for Money, University Funds or Accounts which hold financial information? No
  • Ergonomic Requirements:
    • Must have the physical strength and stamina to perform required work
    • Ability to perform duties under adverse conditions such as working below grade, in extreme hot/cold or confined spaces and from elevated or uneven surfaces
    • Ability to climb ladders, traverse planks or walkways, squat, kneel, bend, stoop, crawl, twist, lay flat and adequate balance to accomplish the required tasks
    • Ability to lift heavy objects up to 50 lbs. repeatedly
    • Ability to tolerate airborne dust and a dirty work environment
    • Ability and flexibility to access boiler watersides/firesides and tanks/vessels through restricted openings as small as 11” x 15” elliptically
    • Ability to apply torque by use of hands, wrists, arms, shoulders, torso, and legs
    • Ability to exert pushing, pulling, and twisting forces
    • Ability and mobility to move about the plant and perform complex procedures under established time constraints

Education, Experience, Training And/or Certifications


  • Training in heating, cooling and/or power plant operations, or related experience
  • Currently possess, OR obtain before completion of probation period (6 month min), and maintain ASOPE Third Class Power Plant Operating Engineer License, or approved equivalent.
Salary and Benefits

Commensurate with qualifications and experience.

The University of Wisconsin System provides a liberal benefits package, including participation in a state pension plan. 

Benefit Details: https://www.wisconsin.edu/ohrwd/benefits/download/summaries/fasl.pdf

Total Compensation Estimator: https://www.wisconsin.edu/ohrwd/benefits/totalcomp/

Application Process

Applications must be submitted electronically through our employment portal. If you need additional assistance you may contact Human Resources at (262) 595-2204. Hours 8:00am-4:30pm Monday-Friday.

STEP 1: Please select the applicable link below:

External Applicants: (NOT currently employed by the University of Wisconsin System)

Internal Applicants: (Currently employed by the University of Wisconsin System)

STEP 2: Submit application materials

Please be sure to complete all required fields and include all required documents before submitting your application. Once submitted, you will not be able to edit or attach any application materials. Files must be complete to be considered. All materials must be added at one time, once submitted you may not edit/add to profile. Please include the following documents:

  • Cover Letter
  • Resume
  • Names and contact information for 3 professional references

Review of Applications

Applications received by 11:59 p.m. Sunday January 24, 2021 are ensured full consideration. Position open until filled.

You must select "SUBMIT". Selecting "Save" will not forward your application materials to the search committee. 

Please be sure to complete all required fields and include all required documents before submitting your application. Once submitted, you will not be able to edit or attach any application materials.

In instances where the Review Committee is unable to ascertain from a candidates application materials whether she/he meets all of the required qualifications, or if all of the application materials are not submitted, they will be evaluated as not meeting such qualifications and may be excluded from further consideration.


Laura Menarek
Available Until: 01/24/2021

Diversity Jobs Employer Member
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