MSc Student Position: Soil Ecology (Dalhousie University)

We are looking for an MSc student to start in May 2024, co-supervised by Paul Manning (Dalhousie University) and Erin Cameron (Saint Mary’s University) but working closely with the Nova Scotia Living Labs Team. The position is fully funded ($24,000/year) and will be based in Truro, Nova Scotia (Dalhousie University Faculty of Agriculture).

Background: Disturbances associated with intensive soil cultivation are widely understood to negatively impact soil health. Incorporating pasture into intensive rotations has been shown promise as a solution for improving soil health. Decomposition of livestock dung on pastures is promoted by a healthy community of invertebrates including dung beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea) and earthworms. However, there is little understanding as to how quickly these invertebrate communities (and the important ecosystem services they support) establish and stabilize. 

Diversity, equity, and inclusion: Dalhousie University is committed to fostering diversity and inclusiveness within the university community and making a collective impact in educating, preventing and addressing equity issues. The Office for Equity and Inclusion website (https://www.dal.ca/dept/vpei.html) provides resources and details of equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility initiatives at Dalhousie.

The ideal candidate will: 

  • Hold a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science, Biology, Ecology, Agriculture, or a related discipline. 
  • Have experience conducting independent research, ideally through successful completion of an Honours Thesis.  
  • Have experience working collaboratively in field and laboratory conditions. 
  • Have a demonstrated interest in the taxonomy and identification of invertebrates. 
  • Demonstrate the ability to work collaboratively with others, think critically, and meet deadlines. 

For consideration, please send the following information as a single PDF by e-mail (paul.manning@dal.ca) with “Land Swap MSc” as the Subject Line:-  a brief letter outlining your research experiences and interests (1 page maximum)- a recent CV including contact information for 2 referees (3 pages maximum)- an unofficial transcript- a scientific writing sample (e.g. thesis, paper, report)

Submissions are due 12 January 2024 at 11:59 PM (Atlantic Time).