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Job #: R-00090673
Location: Arlington, VA
Category: Research Scientist
Schedule (FT/PT): Full Time
Travel Required: Yes, 10% of the time
Shift: Day
Potential for Telework: Yes, 100%
Clearance: Top Secret/SCI with Polygraph
Referral Eligibility: Eligible
Referral Bonus Amount: $5000
Group: Leidos Innovations Center (LInC)

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Job Description:

Our team is looking for a Senior Natural Language Processing (NLP) Researcher Scientist with a background that reflects designing, implementing, and analyzing approaches that integrate, adapt, and extend novel capabilities to state-of-the-art technical challenges in research and development (R&D) programs (basic and applied) as well as in direct client work. Candidates with a background in computational linguistics, human language technology, machine translation, automated speech recognition, machine translation, or linguistic data analysis, and experience participating in leading multi-disciplinary teams of researchers and engineers are strongly preferred.

Work is located in Arlington, VA (Remote is acceptable).

This position requires a strong general knowledge of natural language processing. The candidate should be proactive and carry the desire to push forward Leidos NLP expertise. The candidate must be able to develop NLP solutions with rigorous evaluation and can clearly communicate such solutions with both the technical community and business customers.  

Perform the following on a continual basis:

  • Lead and work with data scientists and machine learning engineers to adapt and scale NLP solutions for a variety of application domains.
  • Design innovative and generalized NLP machine learning solution to extract or infer critical information from unstructured text or multi-modality data. Those solutions include but not limit to tasks like create/customize text embedding, classification, Named Entity Recognition, event extraction, topic modeling, and burst detection.
  • Work closely with customers to gain thorough understanding of their decision making process and develop explainable NLP solutions to support or augment decision making.
  • Design evaluation strategies for measuring both model performance and real world impact.
  • Effectively present NLP work to stakeholders within and outside of Leidos as well as to the scientific community.
  • Keep up with latest development in NLP, understand tradeoffs between classic and modern NLP models, specifically pre-trained language models.
  • Serve as NLP subject-matter-expert for Leidos internal and external projects (e.g., DARPA or IARPA programs) and mentor junior NLP data scientists and researchers.
  • Produce technical white papers and scientific publications in NLP.

Basic Qualifications:

  • Masters with 10–13 years in computational linguistics, human language technologies, machine translation, or another NLP field.
  • Must be able to obtain a Top Secret security clearance with a polygraph security clearance.
  • Publications/demonstrable strong technical results in a specialized subfield of NLP
  • Proven expertise building and validating NLP models with deep learning as well as traditional NLP methods. Hold strong understanding of the real-world advantages and drawbacks of those methods.
  • Strong understanding of Transformer architecture and its variants, familiar with continue pre-training and fine-tuning language model with huggingface framework.
  • Ability to handle ambiguity, priorities, and competing objectives. Experience solving highly technical problems. 
  • Experience in the following areas: text processing and construction of corpora; processing of large text collections with standard NLP tools (e.g., scikit-learn, Spacy) for parsing, entity extraction, POS tagging, topic discovery and classification (such as sentiment analysis), and natural language understanding; tuning hyper-parameters of existing NLP models for domain-specific data sets; computational manipulation and analysis of natural language documents using statistical models; experimenting with large corpora for developing and testing advanced NLP algorithms.
  • Attention to potential data and model biases and develop solutions to mitigate biases.
  • Ability to program in Python or other scripting language, comfort with work in a Linux environment on prime or in AWS Cloud.
  • Familiarity with common NLP and ML toolkits such as Stanford CoreNLP, OpenNLP, NLTK, scikit-learn, SpaCy, and Tensorflow/PyTorch.
  • Ability to write clean, understandable code that follows leading industry standards and practices and is well-documented, and to build easily reproducible models.
  • Outstanding communication skills. Ability to communicate at all levels, including explaining sophisticated technical solutions to non-experts.
  • Open listener, ability to be open to many diverse voices and perspectives. 
  • Experience providing mentorship and guidance to team members. 
  • Knowledge of state-of-the-art methods coupled with the creativity and intelligence to advance beyond them.  Track record of active learning and creative problem solving.
  • Working knowledge of AWS, Google Cloud Platform, Spark, data warehousing.
  • Experience authoring research papers and getting those papers published.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience winning and/or working on competitive contract R&D projects for a customer such as DARPA
  • Prior experience with many of the following models in the context of NLP problems and data: Deep Learning (CNNs, RCNNs, LSTMs, Transformers), GANs, Autoencoders, Reinforcement Learning, Siamese Networks, Logistic Regression, Linear Regression, Support Vector Machines, Hidden Markov Models, Conditional Random Fields, Latent Dirichlet Allocation.
  • Hands-on experience with any of the following: Docker containerization, Kubernetes, Machine Learning Model Monitoring, Dataiku, Domino DataLab.

Pay Range:

Pay Range $113,100.00 - $174,000.00 - $234,900.00

The Leidos pay range for this job level is a general guideline only and not a guarantee of compensation or salary. Additional factors considered in extending an offer include (but are not limited to) responsibilities of the job, education, experience, knowledge, skills, and abilities, as well as internal equity, alignment with market data, applicable bargaining agreement (if any), or other law.



Covid Guidance for the US

In order to enter Leidos facilities in the U.S. and to attend Leidos events outside our facilities, employees are required to be vaccinated for COVID-19 or maintain proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 96 hours of entry. In addition, we are receiving guidance from certain customers that onsite contractor personnel will need to be fully vaccinated to access customer facilities. If you are not vaccinated, please consider getting your COVID-19 vaccination as soon as possible. If you have any questions, please contact your Talent Acquisition POC. 

About Leidos

Leidos is a Fortune 500® technology, engineering, and science solutions and services leader working to solve the world’s toughest challenges in the defense, intelligence, civil, and health markets. The company’s 44,000 employees support vital missions for government and commercial customers. Headquartered in Reston, Virginia, Leidos reported annual revenues of approximately $13.7 billion for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021. For more information, visit

Pay and Benefits

Pay and benefits are fundamental to any career decision. That's why we craft compensation packages that reflect the importance of the work we do for our customers. Employment benefits include competitive compensation, Health and Wellness programs, Income Protection, Paid Leave and Retirement. More details are available here.

Securing Your Data

Beware of fake employment opportunities using Leidos’ name. Leidos will never ask you to provide payment-related information during any part of the employment application process (i.e., ask you for money), nor will Leidos ever advance money as part of the hiring process (i.e., send you a check or money order before doing any work). Further, Leidos will only communicate with you through emails that are generated by the automated system – never from free commercial services (e.g., Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail) or via WhatsApp, Telegram, etc. If you received an email purporting to be from Leidos that asks for payment-related information or any other personal information (e.g., about you or your previous employer), and you are concerned about its legitimacy, please make us aware immediately by emailing us at [email protected].

If you believe you are the victim of a scam, contact your local law enforcement and report the incident to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.

Commitment to Diversity

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to sex, race, ethnicity, age, national origin, citizenship, religion, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, pregnancy, family structure, marital status, ancestry, domestic partner status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, veteran or military status, or any other basis prohibited by law. Leidos will also consider for employment qualified applicants with criminal histories consistent with relevant laws.

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