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Student Research Assistants (2 Positions) - Chemistry Department - Faculty of Science

Competition Number: 
Position Type: 
Student Position
Closing Date: 
Wednesday, April 13, 2016
Date of Posting: 
April 1, 2016
Chemistry Department - Faculty of Science
Student Research Assistants (2 Positions)
Hours of Work: 

37.5 hours per week

$12.08 per hour (vacation pay included)

May 9, 2016 – August 26, 2016

The Chemistry Department requires two undergraduate Research Assistants to assist with an NSERC-funded Environmental Chemistry research project with Dr. Brian Wagner involving fluorescence-based trace analysis of agrichemicals in natural waters, and their impacts on lobster populations in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.


• The students will investigate the use of fluorescence spectroscopy to detect and quantify the presence of various agrichemicals in natural water samples
• The students will optimize previously established fluorescence-based analytical procedures in the Wagner lab, and carefully determine and improve the analytical parameters, including linearity and limit of detection. Such procedures include the enhancement of weak natural fluorescence of agrichemicals through supramolecular inclusion, UV-photolysis, and base-hydrolysis
• Initial work will involve distilled water samples prepared in the lab
• Later work will involve measuring contaminants in natural water and sediment samples collected from the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and may involve the collection process
• One position will focus on the measurement of contaminants in the natural waters, while the other will focus on the extraction and measurement of contaminants from sediments
• The students will be responsible for the careful preparation of analytical solutions in water, measurement of absorption and fluorescence spectra, perform fluorescent titrations as a function of cyclodextrin concentration to determine binding constants, preparation of fluorescence-based calibration plots, and analysis of the results
• Other responsibilities will include participation in group meetings, and maintenance of the laboratory working space and equipment


• A UPEI Chemistry Majors or Honours student, and have completed at least two years of their Chemistry program with a strong academic performance
• Successful completion of Chem 231 and Chem 221 are required
• Prior laboratory experience with techniques such as UV-visible absorption and in particular fluorescence spectroscopy will be an asset

Priority will be given to University of Prince Edward Island students in accordance with Recruitment, Selection, Hiring and Employment Policies and Procedures manual.

Application Instructions: 

Please submit electronically a cover letter quoting the competition number, a resume and reference list to be received no later than the closing date, via the link posted on the UPEI Human Resources website (www.upei.ca/hr/).

If you are unable to apply online, you can drop off your resume to the Human Resources Department, Kelley Building, University of Prince Edward Island, 550 University Avenue, Charlottetown, PEI C1A 4P3, or fax it to (902) 894-2895.

In accordance with Canadian immigration requirements, all qualified student candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens, permanent residents and full-time international students with a valid study permit will be given priority.

The University of Prince Edward Island is committed to gender equity in employment. Only those applicants who are invited to an interview will be acknowledged.

UPEI encourages all qualified applicants to apply for job openings; however, in keeping with the terms and provisions of the university’s various employment and collective agreements, first priority will be given to internal candidates.
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