Current Research Opportunities
Environmental & Life Sciences
Scroll through the Research Opportunities below to see the exciting positions that are available to incoming students in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program! You are encouraged to contact the faculty member directly. If you have any questions, please contact Linda Cardwell, Program Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or 705-748-1011 Ex 7817.
M.Sc. and Ph.D. graduate positions available in a multidisciplinary research group working on measurement and data interpretation challenges in the forensic sciences.
Supervisor: Dr. Arun Moorthy, Forensic Sciences
Forensic scientists are regularly asked to make difficult decisions using limited information. Our research group is interested in developing computational models, algorithms and software tools that help forensic scientists better understand their data and make informed decisions. We are a multidisciplinary group that equally values creativity and rigor in our research, and we simultaneously pursue scientific insights while producing relevant and usable software tools. Our research areas include but are not limited to: mass spectral interpretation, mathematical modelling, data analysis, and scientific software development.
Students will be enrolled in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program at Trent University. Graduate positions start in January, May and September of 2024-25.
M.Sc. and Ph.D. Graduate Student Opportunities in Sustainable Agriculture
Supervisor: Dr. Kira Borden, Trent School of the Environment
The Agroecology Lab at Trent is seeking graduate student researchers to lead projects focused on plant diversification, nutrient cycling, and nature-based solutions to climate change. Students with an interest in agri-environmental sciences, plant and soil science, and biogeochemistry are encouraged to contact Dr. Kira Borden email@example.com. Students will be enrolled in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program at Trent University which takes in new students in January, May and September each year. This posting will remain open until all positions are filled. For more information visit www.kiraborden.com.
M.Sc. Graduate Student Opportunity in Stem Cell Biology
Supervisor: Dr. Stephanie Tobin, Assistant Professor of Biology
An M.Sc. position is available in the Tobin Lab in the Department of Biology at Trent University. We are seeking motivated individuals with a passion for stem cell biology, aging, muscle repair, and/or inflammation. Students will have the opportunity to use cell and animal models of aging and regeneration and learn a variety of molecular techniques including flow cytometry, high throughput sequencing and gene and protein analysis. Experience or interest in cell and animal models would be considered an asset. As part of their degree, students will be encouraged to attend conferences and showcase their work, for which financial support would be provided. Collaboration between the Emery, Frost and (Aaron) Shaffer labs may be possible, depending on the interests of the student. For more information on current projects please see www.stephaniewalestobin.com
Trent University is located in Peterborough, Ontario, approximately 1.5-2 hr from Toronto. Graduate positions will be based at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario as part of the Environmental and Life Sciences Graduate Program www.trentu.ca/els and begin in Fall of 2023. Funding will be provided for each of 2 years, which includes teaching responsibilities (TA position). Positions are open to Canadian citizens or permanent residents, but strong international candidates are encouraged to apply. Interested students should contact Dr. Stephanie Tobin at firstname.lastname@example.org with a brief statement of interests, transcripts and a recently updated resume.
M.Sc. Graduate Student Opportunity in Forest Hydrology – Physical Geography
Supervisor: Dr. Magali Nehemy and Dr. Jason Leach
We are seeking a highly motivated MSc student to be part of the forest hydrology research team at Turkey Lakes Watershed. The MSc will be based at Trent University - Hillslope Ecohydrology Research Lab in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, with fieldwork and data collection at Turkey Lakes Watershed, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. The overarching goal of this research project is to develop a process understanding of the mechanisms that drive patterns of tree water use and its connectivity with stream water sources. Our ongoing project is funded by NSERC and the Canadian Forest Service, Great Lakes Forest Research Centre.
The position This is a full-time 2-year MSc position. The student will focus on monitoring ecohydrological fluxes and storage at Turkey Lakes Watersheds to advance understanding of the frequency of the connectivity between transpiration source water and streamflow across different hillslopes. There is potential to expand to other aspects of catchment science and tracer modeling. The MSc student will be co-supervised by Drs. Magali Nehemy (Trent University, Trent School of the Environment) and Jason Leach (Canadian Forest Service), working with an interdisciplinary team of researchers from the Great Lakes Forest Research Centre, as well as other collaborators outside academia. The student will gain skills related to instrumentation and ecohydrological monitoring, data analysis, and management. There is support for international traveling to attend conferences.
Expected starting date: January 2024 or September 2024.
- Applicants must have (or expect to soon complete) a degree in earth/environmental sciences, water science, forest engineering, geography, civil/environmental engineering, or a related field.
- Must meet the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program (EnLS) (https://www.trentu.ca/els/) eligibility requirements.
- Ability to work in a collaborative manner with team members.
- Willingness to participate in fieldwork in all weather conditions.
Preference will be given to candidates who demonstrate strong quantitative skills and previous fieldwork experience.
To Apply: Interested candidates should submit the following package in a single PDF file via e-mail to Dr. Magali Nehemy (email@example.com) and Dr. Jason Leach (firstname.lastname@example.org) with the subject line “MSc Forest Hydrology Application”.
- A cover letter highlighting relevant experience, motivation for applying to the position, and research interests.
- A curriculum vitae.
- Unofficial transcript.
- Names and contact information for two referees.
If you have any questions regarding the application process and eligibility please contact us.
Closing date: Applications will be reviewed as they are received. The positions will remain open until filled. We thank all applicants for their interest. However, only individuals selected for an interview will be contacted.
M.Sc. and Ph.D. Graduate Student Opportunities in Community Based Contaminants Research
Supervisor: Dr. Mary-Claire Buell, Trent School of the Environment
Trent University's Environmental Forensics Lab is seeking students for a project focused on empowering communities to become active participants in a cross-country snapshot of polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination in fish. Students with an interest in environmental chemistry, toxicology, and/or participatory action research should get in touch! These positions are available through the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program at Trent University. Contact Dr. Mary-Claire Buell at email@example.com .
M.Sc. Opportunity to Work on Air Pollutant Exposure Assessment and Health Impacts
Supervisors: Dr. Pourya Shahpoury (Environmental and Life Sciences Program, Trent University), Dr. Mark Parnis (Department of Chemistry, Trent University)
We have an exciting opportunity for a M.Sc. student seeking to gain experience in characterization of environmental pollutants and their exposure assessment. The student will join a team of scientists from federal and provincial governments (Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), the Ontario Ministry of Environment, Conservation, and Parks) and academia (Trent University, University of Toronto, York University), and will work on an interdisciplinary project aiming to assess the state of winter air pollution in Toronto. The student will have the opportunity to learn and participate in a variety of activities including collection of air samples using passive air samplers, chemical characterization and instrumental analysis, testing of samples for toxicity using chemical assays, data analysis, and the application of computer models. The student will be required to work at the ECCC laboratories in Toronto, and complete coursework and teaching assistantship in Peterborough.
This position has a guaranteed stipend of $ 22,000/year.
Requirements of the position:
B.Sc. degree in environmental chemistry or analytical chemistry
Strong background in analytical/bioanalytical techniques
Interest in addressing challenges related to environmental pollutants and public health
Ability to travel to and work at ECCC facilities in Toronto
Start date: September 2023
For further details please contact Dr. Pourya Shahpoury: firstname.lastname@example.org
Funded Positions in Global Change Ecology
Supervisors: Dr. Andrew Tanentzap and Dr. Erik Emilson
The Ecosystems and Global Change Group (www.ecosystemchange.com) at Trent University jointly led by Prof Andrew Tanentzap (Canada Research Chair in Climate Change and Northern Ecosystems) and Dr Erik Emilson (Research Scientist, Canadian Forest Service sector of Natural Resources Canada, (https://glfc-wet.github.io) is recruiting MSc/PhD students at the intersect of ecosystem ecology, microbiology, and geochemistry in northern waters and soils.
What we can offer: Our research training environment features some of the most advanced environmental research infrastructure in Canada, including use of a Fourier transform – ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometer, long-read (Oxford Nanopore) sequencing facility, radioisotope and stable isotope labs, and eddy covariance systems, with extensive support for field research (ATVs, snowmobiles, autonomous surface vessel). As our team partners with government scientists, you will have a unique opportunity to influence environmental policy and make connections outside of academic to bolster your career. All postgraduate candidates are paid $22k/year, considerably more than minimum stipends at Trent. Our group also supports flexible working arrangements and supports applicants from diverse backgrounds as we strive to build a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive workplace. Students will be enrolled in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program at Trent University.
Projects available for 2023 entry:
MSc or PhD – Tracing pathogens released into a warming Arctic
Working with Indigenous and Health Canada partners, this project will use eDNA approaches to identify novel microbial pathogens released from thawing permafrost and track their movement in the Canadian Arctic.
MSc or PhD – Salmon rivers under the cumulative effects of climate and forest change
This project will investigate the interactive effects of climate change and forest management on basal food webs of forested headwaters of salmonid-bearing rivers.
PhD – The ecological role of chemical diversity under a warming climate
This project will test how ecosystem function varies with the composition of organic matter in freshwaters and soils across a space-for-time gradient of future climate change.
PhD – The global pulse of dissolved organic matter
This project will leverage existing FT-ICR MS datasets, including monthly measurements from 70 sites worldwide, to analyse seasonality in dissolved organic matter of lakes and identify drivers of their thermal responses.
MSc/PhD – Your own project!
We are interested in working with applicants motivated to develop their own research project in the areas described above and on our websites. Reach out with your ideas!
How to apply: Please email Andrew Tanentzap (email@example.com) with a CV and a description of what you hope to get out of working with us, how your research interests are a good fit to our group, and how your past experiences make you suitable for the independent and often challenging nature of research. Positions will remain open until they are filled.
Master of Science opportunity - Contaminants and Impacts to Traditional Food Sources - Community based
Supervisor: Dr. Mary-Claire Buell
The Project: We are seeking to fill a Master of Science student position for a project focused on mercury in fish, safe consumption, and human health risk assessment. This student will work in collaboration with Collective Environmental, Moose Cree First Nation, Camp Onakawana, and Trent University.
Start date: January 2023, at Trent University in the Environmental and Life Sciences Graduate Program
Contact: Dr. Mary-Claire Buell
PhD Graduate Student Position – Impacts of foraging by hyperabundant Arctic-nesting geese on vegetation of Arctic and subarctic coastal lowlands
Supervisors: Dr. Glen Brown & Dr. Peter Kotanen
Herbivores strongly influence plant communities. Changes in abundance of herbivores can cause rapid changes in plant biomass, species composition and ecosystem processes. The mid-continent population of lesser snow geese expanded dramatically in North America during the past 50 years. The increased abundance of geese in combination with their destructive feeding habits has caused the degradation of large tracts of coastal wetlands on their arctic and subarctic breeding range. Long term studies by the Hudson Bay Project (http://research.amnh.org/users/rfr/hbp/) have demonstrated processes of habitat degradation and rapid ecological change that adversely impacts species sharing the coastal habitat.
We seek a PhD student to investigate the drivers of recovery or continued degradation of breeding range habitat, and the outcomes to ecosystems. The student will make use of existing historical ground collected data (e.g. plant biomass), remote sensing, and new field studies to address their questions. The student will have the opportunity to directly support wildlife conservation and management and gain experience on a collaborative project with government agencies and partners (Mississippi Flyway Council, Environment and Climate Change Canada, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry). Field work will be based at one or more sites near Churchill, Manitoba (Cape Churchill and La Perouse Bay), Akimiski Island, and the Burntpoint Research Station in Polar Bear Provincial Park, Ontario.
The student will be enrolled in the Environmental and Life Sciences Graduate Program, Trent University, and under the supervision of Dr. Glen Brown, (Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry at Trent University) and Dr. Peter Kotanen (University of Toronto). Start dates are flexible, January or May 2024.
Salary: A stipend consistent with Trent University policies for PhD will be provided (includes a Teaching Assistantship).
Qualifications: Candidates should have an interest in plant-animal interactions and a solid background in ecology and remote sensing, and an aptitude for statistical and spatial analysis (including geographic information systems and imagery processing), as well as the ability to conduct laborious field work in remote areas for extended periods of time. A willingness to become licensed in firearm use is also required due to the presence of polar bears. Prospective students should send a letter of interest, a CV, unofficial transcripts, and the names of two references to Dr. Glen Brown (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Dr. Peter Kotanen (email@example.com).
The Northern Animal Ecology Lab @ Trent (https://brownecologylab.weebly.com/) investigates the mechanisms driving change in the subarctic, involving interactions among climate, habitat, and wildlife communities. Wildlife adapted to the cold northern climate may be particularly vulnerable at the edge of range near the arctic-boreal ecotone. We study a range of species, including shorebirds, waterfowl, predators (eg. arctic fox), and small mammals. Students will gain experience in field-based research, use of diverse technologies, including remote sensing and drones, and quantitative methods.
M.Sc. & Ph.D. Graduate Positions – Climate change, wildlife, and their habitat near the arctic-boreal ecotone
Supervisor: Dr. Glen Brown, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and Canadian Centre for Remote Sensing
Our lab (https://brownecologylab.weebly.com/) investigates the mechanisms driving change in the subarctic, involving interactions among climate, habitat, and wildlife communities. Wildlife adapted to the cold northern climate may be particularly vulnerable at the edge of range near the arctic-boreal ecotone. We study a range of species, including shorebirds, waterfowl, predators (eg. arctic fox), and small mammals. Students will gain experience in field-based research, use of diverse technologies, including remote sensing and drones, and quantitative methods.
Available projects include:
- food web interactions involving terrestrial vertebrates and how wildlife habitat is affected by changes in permafrost.
- water bird behavior and breeding success in relation to climate, habitat and predation risk. E.g. dunlin, whimbrel, Hudsonian Godwit, and Canada geese.
- arctic fox ecology and competition with red fox
- density dependent habitat selection in a changing environment
Students will have the opportunity to directly support wildlife conservation and management and gain experience on a collaborative project with a government agency (Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry) and partners (York University, Canadian Centre for Remote Sensing). Field work will be based at the Burntpoint Research Station in Polar Bear Provincial Park, Ontario.
Graduate Program Start dates: Students will be enrolled in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program at Trent University which takes in new students in January, May and September each year. This posting will remain open until all positions are filled.
Salary: A minimum stipend consistent with Trent University policies for PhD and MSc will be provided (includes a Teaching Assistantship).
Qualifications: Candidates should have a solid background in ecology and an aptitude for statistical and spatial analysis (including geographic information systems and imagery processing), as well as the ability to conduct laborious field work in remote areas for extended periods of time. A willingness to become licensed in firearm use is also required due to the presence of polar bears.
Prospective students should send a letter of interest, a CV, unofficial transcripts, and the names of two references to Dr. Glen Brown (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Available graduate positions in the Integrative Wildlife Conservation lab at Trent University
The IWC lab conducts cutting-edge research on the conservation biology and population ecology of plant and animals, in an effort to address some of the major environmental challenges facing the world today. The lab uses state-of-the-art instruments like GPS transmitters and accelerometers to track animal states and interactions, drones and remote sensors to monitor forest health and the effects of climate change, and genomics and bioinformatics to assess cellular-level responses to stressors like disease or predation risk. We work on species ranging from Canada lynx to soil microbes and in environments as variable as the boreal forest of the Yukon to the desert of Namibia.
Graduate positions will be based at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario as part of the Environmental and Life Sciences Graduate Program (http://www.trentu.ca/els/)
Projects available for 2023
- PhD – Spatial and behavioural dynamics of Canada lynx in response to the 10-year snowshoe hare cycle
- PhD – Population ecology of snowshoe hares in response to climate change
- PhD – Climate change impacts on boreal forest health and productivity
- Ph.D. – Population status and conservation biology of softshell turtles (pending funding)
- Ph.D. – Behavioural, physiological and genomic responses of amphibians to stressors like predators and pathogens
- M.Sc. - Genome assembly and phylogeny for conservation of at-risk Lithops spp. plants
- Ph.D. - Conservation biology and viability of isolated Lithops populations
*Note that some projects listed at the PhD level (preferred) could be sub-divided into components that are suitable for an M.Sc. thesis
Research on the movement patterns of Great Lakes fish using acoustic telemetry
Supervisor: Dr. Erin Dunlop, NDMNRF
An M.Sc. or Ph.D. position is available to study the movement patterns of lake whitefish in Lake Huron, where the species has undergone substantial changes in population dynamics and life history following species invasions. Acoustic telemetry involves implanting fish with tags that emit a unique ID that is detected on receivers placed in the lake as the fish swim by. The successful candidate would be working on an exciting and important project that makes use of one of the largest & newest acoustic telemetry arrays in the Great Lakes. The student will work closely with project partners, including the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resource & Forestry, Parks Canada, and Saugeen Ojibway Nation. Academic collaborators on this project will include Dr. Mike Rennie (Lakehead University) and Dr. Graham Raby (Trent University). Interested students should contact Dr. Erin Dunlop (email@example.com) with a brief statement of interests and experience, transcripts, and a recently updated resume.
Research on the ecology of Great Lakes fish populations
Supervisor: Dr. Erin Dunlop, NDMNRF
An M.Sc. position is available to investigate diets and niche space of important fish species in Lake Huron. The M.Sc. student will examine trends in diet and stable isotope patterns in lake whitefish and lake trout, two species of ecological, commercial, and cultural significance in the Great Lakes. The project involves closely collaborating with Saugeen Ojibway Nation and the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources & Forestry as part of a broader research project using a two-eyed seeing approach to study declines of lake whitefish. The broader two-eyed seeing project involves studying fish population dynamics using both quantitative “western” science approaches as well as documenting Indigenous Ecological Knowledge. This is a unique and exciting opportunity! The M.Sc. student at Trent will focus on the western science component of the project, but have the opportunity to work in a team environment with researchers conducting the Indigenous Ecological Knowledge component of the study. Interested students should contact Dr. Erin Dunlop (firstname.lastname@example.org) with a brief statement of interests and experience, transcripts, and a recently updated resume.
M.Sc. Opportunities for research in Microplastics, Biomonitoring, and Air Pollution impacts
Supervisor, Dr. Julian Aherne, Trent School of the Environment
Are you a recent graduate, interested in an M.Sc. in research, and concerned about microplastic and air pollution?
We have a number of exciting opportunities focused on assessing the abundance and distribution of microplastics in Canadian ecosystems. In addition, we have a number of opportunities focused on the impacts of air pollution on natural ecosystems in Ontario, northern and western Canada, and internationally. Projects cover a wide range of research topics, such as microplastics, biomonitoring, and pollution impacts in the arctic and downwind from a large-point emissions source. Project start dates range from May to January. The successful candidate will be registered in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program www.trentu.ca/els at Trent University.
For further details contact: email@example.com
Dr. Julian Aherne, Trent School of the Environment
Ph.D. Positions - Ecology of Lake and River Ecosystems
Supervisor: Dr. Maggie Xenopoulos
Graduate Ph.D. positions are available to contribute to on-going ecological research on rivers in the Laboratory of Freshwater Ecology at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario and as part of a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Global Change of Aquatic Ecosystems. Research for these positions could range from foodweb responses to environmental stress to landscape studies of carbon and nutrients. Field work for these positions could include the Great Lakes basin and central Ontario in cottage country. The graduate positions are funded at the Ph.D. level but exceptional M.Sc. candidates who are interested in transferring to a Ph.D. will be considered. Students will be enrolled in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program at Trent University which takes in new students in January, May and September each year. This posting will remain open until all positions are filled. Interested students should contact Dr. Maggie Xenopoulos (firstname.lastname@example.org) with a brief statement of interests, transcripts and a recently updated resume. Information of lab projects can be found at: www.xenopoulos.ca .
Ph.D. Graduate student opportunities in avian ecological physiology
Supervisor: Dr. Gary Burness
About the projects: We are seeking 1-2 Ph.D. students interested in avian thermal physiology. Areas of research include: the impact of temperature during development on adult physiology, climatic warming as a constraint on activity in wild birds, and the use of automated radio-telemetry to understand fine-scale movements. Specific thesis topics are flexible, and you are encouraged to contribute your ideas.
Requirements: You should have an interest in animal physiology/physiological ecology. Experience and/or interest in use of R would be an asset (although not required). Ph.D. applicants will require a completed M.Sc. or equivalent, by the start date. Positions are open to Canadian citizens or permanent residents, but strong international candidates are encouraged to apply. We seek a diversity of ideas and perspectives in the lab, so we especially welcome applicants from under-represented groups.
Funding: The minimum stipend for a PhD student is $25,015.91 for each of 4 years. Students holding external funding are particularly encouraged to apply.
Interested in applying? Send an email, with your CV and a brief statement of research interests to: Gary Burness, email@example.com
Start date: May or September, 2024. Applications will be considered until all positions are filled.
M.Sc. and Ph.D. positions – Cell and molecular biology
Supervisor: Dr. Robert Huber
The Huber Lab uses the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum as a model system for studying the functions of proteins linked to human disease. Current research is focused on revealing the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCLs), commonly known as Batten disease (the most common form of childhood neurodegeneration). For more information, please visit: http://huberlab.ca
Students will gain experience using a diversity of cellular, molecular, and biochemical approaches, including cell culture and harvest, PCR and gene cloning, gene knockout, qPCR, recombinant protein expression, immunoprecipitation, SDS-PAGE and western blotting, immunofluorescence, and epifluorescence microscopy.
Interested applicants should submit a cover letter that includes a brief summary of research experience/interests/goals (no more than a page), CV, unofficial transcript(s), and the names of 2 academic references to Dr. Robert Huber (firstname.lastname@example.org). The Huber Lab is currently funded by two 5-year grants from CIHR and NSERC. Full financial support is offered for qualified candidates.
The different stages of Dictyostelum development
Copyright, M.J. Grimson & R.L. Blanton, Biological Sciences Electron Microscopy Laboratory, Texas Tech University
Graduate Student Opportunities in Chemical and Biomedical Sciences
Supervisor: Dr. Sanela Martic, Dept. of Forensic Science, Trent U
Multiple student positions (M.Sc. or Ph.D.) are available in the area of analytical chemistry and biochemistry focused on molecules linked to diseases, environment, forensic science, and food safety, among other topics.
The projects will use chemical and analytical tools to design and develop new technologies for study and detection of targets of interest. Targets of interest may include chemical/biochemical reactions, disease mechanisms, organics/inorganics in the environment, compounds in forensic toxicology, and food pathogens, among others. Techniques utilized in our research group include: spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, chromatography, electrophoresis and blotting, surface plasmon resonance, electrochemistry, quartz-crystal microbalance, among others.
The student will be enrolled in the Environmental and Life Sciences Graduate Program, Trent University, and under the supervision of Dr. Sanela Martic. Students will receive financial support. The project will begin immediately.
Candidates should have a solid background in chemistry, biochemistry or biology and an aptitude for chemical, biochemical and analytical testing. Prospective student should meet the minimum requirement for admission to the M.Sc. or Ph.D. program.
Students interested should send their letter of interest, CV (resume) and unofficial transcripts to Dr. Sanela Martic, email@example.com. The position will remain open until a suitable candidate is selected.
Please visit the Martic lab research group webpage for more information: https://sites.google.com/trentu.ca/marticlab
M.Sc. and Ph.D. Positions studying the Evolutionary Ecology of an Invasive Hybrid Zone
Supervisors: Dr. Marcel Dorken and Dr. Joanna Freeland, Dept. of Biology; Dr. Aaron Shafer, Forensic Science Program
Plants are essential components of wetland ecosystems, but remain largely understudied; as a result, we have little insight into how environmental changes (including novel invasive species) are impacting aquatic plant communities and their associated taxa. Cattails (Typha spp.) are critical to wetlands around the world, but in North America they are being replaced with cryptic, invasive interspecific hybrids. We use a combination of experimental, field, and molecular genetic work to investigate Typha hybrid zone dynamics in the Great Lakes Region, and are looking for a graduate student to continue this work. There are several potential projects that can include local adaptation, hybrid selection, and/or competition (e.g. using bioinformatics, SNPs, growth experiments, etc). Depending on the project, this can be a collaboration with Drs. Joanna Freeland, Marcel Dorken, and Aaron Shafer.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
M.Sc. in Environmental and Life Sciences - Nutrients and ecosystem health
Supervisor: Dr. Shaun Watmough
Decades of acid rain and timber harvesting have depleted soil nutrient levels and lake chemistry is changing alarmingly. Understanding the key processes involved and mitigation options including the application of wood ash are the focus of this research project.
I am seeking two enthusiastic, motivated students with a background in biogeochemistry and/or plant ecology to investigate the biogeochemistry of essential plant nutrients and/or the impact of wood ash application on forest and aquatic ecosystems, beginning September 1st, 2022.
The students would enroll in the Environmental and Life Sciences Graduate Program (ENLS) (https://www.trentu.ca/els/msc.php) at Trent University and will be supervised by Prof. Shaun Watmough. The students must meet the academic requirements for entrance to the ENLS Program (77% average), have a valid driver’s license and be comfortable working in the field and in a laboratory. The students would collaborate with numerous agencies and stakeholders including the Canadian Forest Service, ASH-NET study (https://cfs.nrcan.gc.ca/projects/140), Friends of Muskoka Watershed and Haliburton Forest and Wildlife Reserve. The students will join an active research lab, attend and present at conferences and make connections that may provide future exciting opportunities. Interested students should contact Dr. Shaun Watmough (email@example.com).
M.Sc. and Ph.D. Positions - Molecular Parasitology/Biochemistry
Supervisor: Dr. Janet Yee
We have positions for either M.Sc. or Ph.D. candidates who are interested in the study of molecular biology, biochemistry and molecular parasitology.
The research in our laboratory studies the biology of the waterborne parasite, Giardia intestinalis, by using molecular and biochemical approaches. This protist is found in freshwater lakes and streams, and it infects humans, domestic animals, and wildlife. Although giardiasis occurs worldwide, this disease is especially problematic in less-developed countries where diarrhea kills about 2.2 million people each year, with most cases involving children less than 5 years of age. Drugs currently available to treat Giardia are highly toxic especially to developing fetuses in pregnant women. The major problem in finding an effective and non-toxic drug for treatment is that Giardia and humans are both eukaryotes and thus, share many biological pathways. Consequently, any drug that would affect Giardia’s health would also affect the health of humans. One approach to developing a drug that would only affect Giardia would be to look for biological targets that are unique to this parasite. At present, we are focusing on regulators of the Giardia cell cycle, heme-binding proteins, and the identification and characterization of Giardia transcription factors. More information about our lab, projects and current students can be found on our website <http://www.jyee.ca>.
Techniques utilized in our research include: cell culturing in a biosafety cabinet, gene cloning, gel shift assays, qPCR, immunoblotting (Western blots), immunofluorescent microscopy, flow cytometry, recombinant protein purification, and UV-vis spectroscopy.
The ideal student would have completed and obtained high academic standing in the following courses: Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, Microbiology (or Parasitology) and Genetics. It would be helpful if the student has some experience working in a research laboratory outside of their courses such as the completion of an undergraduate research thesis project. The student should have good analytical, numeracy and problem-solving skills. Most importantly, the student must be enthusiastic and willing to learn.
Full financial support is offered for qualified applicants.
Interested applicants should submit a cover letter that includes a brief summary of your research experience/interests/goals, CV, unofficial transcripts, and names of 2 academic references to Dr. Janet Yee.
Ecology of Lake and River Ecosystems
Supervisors: Dr. Maggie Xenopoulos and Dr. Paul Frost
Graduate PhD positions are available in the Laboratory of Freshwater Ecology at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario to conduct ecological research on lakes and rivers. Research for these positions could range from nutrient effects on animal nutrition and food webs to landscape studies of carbon and nutrients. Field work for these positions could include projects in the Great Lakes and their watersheds, central Ontario in cottage country and the Experimental Lakes Area in northwestern Ontario. These graduate positions are funded at the PhD level but we will consider exceptional M.Sc. candidates who are interested in converting to a PhD. Students will be enrolled in the Environmental & Life Sciences Graduate Program at Trent University which takes in new students in January, May and September each year. This posting will remain open until all positions are filled. .
M.Sc. and Ph.D. positions - CO2 mineralization within mine wastes and natural systems
Supervisor: Dr. Ian Power
Students in Dr. Ian Power’s group (PowerGeolab.com) are researching various topics, including removing CO2 from the atmosphere, stabilizing mine wastes, and preserving biosignatures with minerals. Our research has broad implications for mitigating climate change, de-risking mine sites, and searching for evidence of life on Mars! Several projects are available and may be tailored to fit a student’s knowledge, skills, and interests.
There is a vital and pressing need to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) continues to rise and the impacts of climate change become more pronounced. Additionally, carbon pricing is providing financial motivation for individuals, industries, and countries to curb GHG emissions.
Prof. Ian Power’s research team aims to better understand fundamental geochemical, mineralogical, and geobiological processes that are relevant to addressing environmental challenges including carbon management and sequestration, an emerging field in geoscience that is ripe for scientific inquiry and technological advances!
Applications are invited for M.Sc. and Ph.D. positions with Prof. Ian Power, firstname.lastname@example.org (Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Environmental Geoscience) in the Environmental & Life Sciences (EnLS) Graduate Program at Trent University. Research will consist of laboratory experiments and fieldwork to study mineral-water-gas interactions and CO2 mineralization within mine wastes and natural systems. Fieldwork may include trips to Canadian and international localities. Several projects are available and may be tailored to fit a prospective student’s knowledge, skills, and interests.
Students should be motivated, preferably hold a degree in either geoscience, geography, environmental science, chemistry, or closely related field, and must meet the entry requirements for graduate research in EnLS. The ideal candidate will have a strong academic standing, field and laboratory skills, excellent communication skills, strong work ethic, and a passion for science! Research experience at any level is highly advantageous. All interested and qualified students are welcome. Visit the PowerGeoLab Website for more information.