M. Brandon Jones

Grant and Fellowship Manager
National Center for Environmental Research (EPA)
What is your current job and what does it entail? 

I serve as an assistant center director at the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, DC. I provide cradle to grave management of extramural grants and fellowships in EPA's Science to Achieve Results (STAR) Program. The STAR program supports high quality research by the nation's leading scientists and engineers to improve EPA's scientific basis for decisions on national environmental issues. EPA supports leading edge extramural research in exposure, effects, risk assessment, and risk management through competitions for STAR grants, fellowships and research contracts (Small Business Innovative Research Program).

What was the key factor in your career decision? 

Being in a position to help address environmental issues that are impacting our society.

What do like most about your career? 

I like being involved with directing some of the cutting edge science that is so important to EPA's mission, particularly in the ecological arena. I also enjoy attending various meetings to promote the STAR program's grants and fellowships.

What do you like least about your career? 

Sometimes we do not have as many resources to put towards our research goals as we would like, but we always focus on the positive.

What do you do to relax? 

Church, family, read, cook, watch TV and movies, travel.

Who are your heroes/heroines? 

Besides Jesus Christ and my family, anyone who has worked to be the voice for underrepresented groups.

What advice would you give a student who expressed an interest in pursuing a career in your field? 

Take the best science and math courses available. Gain as much experience as possible in the field you're interested in or a related field (even if you have to volunteer).

Are career opportunities in your field increasing or decreasing and why? 

I think there are more opportunities to network and gain experience and possibly tailor a career depending on the arena (academia, corporate, government). Networking is key and having experiences certainly helps.

What will you be doing 10 years from today? 

Hopefully, I will still be in a position to help people and the environment in whatever I'm doing. If I ever find myself doing something that is not helpful to someone, I may have to rethink that activity.

M. Brandon Jones

Take the best science and math courses available. Gain as much experience as possible in the field you're interested in or a related field (even if you have to volunteer).

Education

B.S., Biology, Lincoln University
M.S., Marine Biology and Biochemistry, University of Delaware College of Marine Studies
Ph.D., Marine Biology and Biochemistry, University of Delaware College of Marine Studies

Salary

$100,000 - $125,000