Recruitment for PhD Student for 2021

QE3 Research Group welcomes applications for a PhD Student to study “The Effects of Microplastics on Amphibians in a Whole-Lake Experiment at the IISD-Experimental Lakes Area.”

Project Description: The pELAstic Study is an ecosystem-scale experiment that will help us better understand the effects of microplastic pollution on boreal lakes and their wildlife. This ambitious study is led by a highly collaborative, interdisciplinary team of academics, government scientists, and NGO partners from across North America. Based at the world-renowned IISD-Experimental Lakes Area, the pELAstic Study will experimentally add microplastics to a whole-lake ecosystem and monitor the environmental fate and ecological effects of these emerging contaminants. The PhD student will join the pELAstic research team to assess the potential adverse effects of microplastics on amphibians in the whole- ecosystem experiment. The student will be responsible for characterizing the amphibian communities in the study lakes, as well as measuring a comprehensive suite of ecologically relevant toxicity endpoints in amphibians.

Academic Environment: The successful applicants will join the QE3 Research Group directed by Dr. Diane Orihel, Assistant Professor and Queen’s National Scholar in Aquatic Ecotoxicology. Applicants will be affiliated with the Department of Biology at Queen’s University, one of Canada’s top universities.

Funding. This research project is funded by an NSERC Plastic Science for a Cleaner Future Grant. Guaranteed stipend for PhD students is at least $24,800 CAD per year. Preferred start date is September 1, 2021.

Essential Qualifications & Eligibility
1. Research-based MSc degree in Biological Sciences
2. Interest and knowledge in herpetology
3. Experience in the field, preferably with herpetofauna
4. Strong writing and interpersonal skills

Unfortunately, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, this opportunity is only open to domestic students.

Application Process
To apply, please send the following by email (with the exact subject line “QE3PhD21”) to Dr. Diane Orihel ( by April 15, 2021:
(a) Cover letter (1 pg.): stating the position you are applying for, explaining why you are interested in this project and in my research lab, and providing evidence of how you meet the desired qualifications.
(b) Curriculum vitae
(c) Transcript (most advanced university degree only)
(d) Contact information for three references (must include affiliations with official work email addresses)
(e) PDFs of your journal publications, if applicable (or MSc thesis, if you have not yet published your work)
Incomplete applications will not be considered, and only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

The QE3 Research Group strives to be an equitable, diverse, and inclusive research community where everyone is welcomed, supported, and empowered to grow to their fullest potential. We encourage applications from Indigenous, Black, and other equity-seeking persons.

You are welcome to download our poster and share it on your networks: qe3phdrecruitment2021