Graduate student position available in Prosser group

Dr. Ryan Prosser’s research group is searching for a graduate student to work on a NSERC Alliance project that is a collaboration between the University of Guelph, University of Waterloo, Shell Canada, Matrix Solutions, and Azimuth Consulting Group. The project will involve investigating the toxicity of sulfolane to different early life stages of amphibian species. Sulfolane (also tetramethylene sulfone, systematic name: 1λ6-thiolane-1,1-dione) is an organosulfur compound with the formula (CH2)4SO2. It is a colorless liquid commonly used in the chemical industry as a solvent for extractive distillation and chemical reactions. There is a lack of toxicity data on sulfolane for amphibians. This data is important for assessing the potential risk that sulfolane contamination poses to amphibian populations and, by extension, freshwater ecosystems.

Required qualifications:

Applicants must have a BSc or MSc in the natural sciences along with demonstrated skills in quantitative analyses and be keen, hardworking, and highly collaborative individuals. Experience with environmental toxicology and/or amphibians would be an asset.

For candidates:

  • Please send an email addressed to Dr. Ryan Prosser ( Guelph University) including “Research opportunity” in the subject. Include a CV and a cover letter with a brief description of your research interests, relevant experience, and why you are interested in this position.
  • This opportunity could be at the MSc or PhD depending on interest and experience of applicants.
  • Start date is negotiable, though ideally the candidate can start as soon as possible.
  • We will work with the candidates to secure external grants (e.g., Tri-Council). However, we can guarantee funding for up to 2-5 years, depending on whether the candidate is at MSc or PhD. With a goal towards reaching or nearing living wage levels of funding, remunerations, including top-ops to external grants, will be at levels exceeding Tri-Council minimums.
  • All interested candidates are encouraged to apply. The University of Guelph is committed to equity in its policies, practices, and programs, supports diversity in its teaching, learning and work environments, and ensures that applications for members of underrepresented groups are seriously considered under its employment equity policy.
  • We will begin accepting applications immediately and until the position is filled so please submit as soon as possible.

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If you’re looking for a place to kick-start your career, where you can contribute to a dynamic and innovative firm, tackle challenging project work, and collaborate with industry recognized professionals – Geosyntec is the place for you! As a Staff Environmental Professional in Guelph, Waterloo, or Cambridge, Ontario in our contaminated site assessment & remediation practice, you will have the opportunity to apply your academic knowledge to real-world situations while also learning the business skills needed for a successful consulting career.

Our clients ask us to address their new ventures and most challenging problems involving the environment, natural resources, and civil infrastructure. Geosyntec is internationally known for its technical leadership, broad experience, and exceptional client service. Learn more by visiting


Is this the right position to help you achieve your professional goals? Some of the key responsibilities for the position include:

  • Fieldwork such as soil, groundwater, sediment, surface water, soil vapour, and air sampling, drilling, test pitting, and contractor oversight, and remediation/mitigation system operation and maintenance (O&M);
  • Chemical data and contaminant fate & transport evaluation;
  • Groundwater and soil remedy and/or vapour intrusion mitigation system evaluation, cost estimation, design calculations, and implementation;
  • Environmental due diligence, regulatory compliance services, and permitting;
  • Environmental site assessment, risk assessment and risk management;
  • Understanding of the Ontario environmental regulatory framework;
  • Data analysis, including preparing maps, tables, borehole logs, and figures; and
  • Technical reports, letters, memoranda, plans, specifications, and proposals.

Collaboration and mentoring are cornerstones of Geosyntec’s culture. You should expect to work closely with experienced professionals who will guide and integrate you into Geosyntec’s culture.

Here are some other things you should know about our Staff Professional position:

  • Training: This position requires Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) hazardous waste operations and emergency response, first aid, and CPR training paid by the firm.  Medical monitoring is also provided.
  • Professional development: This position includes in-house seminars, webinars, and mentoring, that allow our professionals to build the technical and business skills necessary to become successful consultants.
  • Fieldwork: Up to 70%
  • Overnight travel: Up to 30%

Your success is our success. We encourage our professionals to continually develop their interests and skills. Advancement is based on an individual’s own performance and initiative.


  • Bachelor’s degree in environmental, geological, civil, or chemical engineering, geology, or related science (required)
  • Advanced degree in above (optional)


  • Ability to read, analyze and interpret scientific data and technical publications, journals, procedures, government regulations, design drawing specifications and project related reports.
  • Ability to effectively present information in oral and written format and respond to questions from project managers, project team members, and clients.
  • Ability to write routine reports and correspondence that are clear, well organized, and grammatically correct.
  • Ability to apply methods, procedures, practices, and processes derived from academic training to solve technical problems related to environmental site assessment, risk assessment, remediation, and vapour intrusion.
  • Proficiency in the use of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
  • Prior internship experience in environmental consulting. (preferred)
  • Prior research experience in contaminated media or remediation technology. (preferred)
  • Valid Canadian driver’s license and a satisfactory driving record for business travel. (required)
  • Willingness and ability to work outside Canada. (preferred)