Research Skills Development Trainee

Wildlife and Ecosystem Bioindicators Lab
Department of Ecosystem Science and Management, University of Northern British Columbia

Job Description: The candidate will join a research lab specializing in wildlife health and ecology at the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) in Prince George, BC (lab website: In this role, the candidate will work with a variety of graduate and undergraduate students on projects related to ungulate health and physiology. The candidate should be interested in gaining skills through fieldwork on different species and in a variety of seasons (including winter). The candidate will also conduct lab work, specifically parasitology and immunoassays. In addition, the candidate will help with tasks including maintaining the lab website, analyzing trail camera images, and tracking and ordering lab supplies.

This position will offer a number of professional development opportunities. The candidate will work closely with the Lab’s director (Dr. Heather Bryan) and graduate students in the lab group to learn research skills and conduct lab and data analyses. The candidate will also have a variety of training opportunities, including safety training and professional development training through the Eco Canada program. The candidate will also have opportunities to interact with a variety of researchers and graduate students at UNBC and to attend seminars on campus.

Duties will include:

  • Contributing to the maintenance and development of the research lab (e.g., developing lab safety protocols, researching and ordering equipment, applying for permits)
  • Helping with fieldwork on wildlife health and biodiversity (e.g., winter tick surveys, collection of pellets from moose and elk, biodiversity sampling, and camera-trapping)
  • Conducting assays for hormones in fecal and hair samples, parasitology, and molecular genetics
  • Conducting literature reviews and writing reports
  • Designing and maintaining a lab website
  • Developing new research projects (e.g., looking into data sources, collecting preliminary data, talking with potential collaborators, designing research protocols)

Required Qualifications and Experience:

  • Background in biochemistry, molecular ecology, and/or analytical methods
  • Experience with laboratory assays (e.g., immunoassays, parasitology, genetics)
  • Experience or interest in field research
  • Keen attention to detail and organizational skills
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Computer skills (e.g., Microsoft word, Excel)
  • Website design and maintenance
  • Research skills (literature reviews, scientific writing and editing)
  • Potential interest in graduate studies


The position will be funded by UNBC and Eco Canada. To be Eligible for the Eco Canada Program, applicants must be:

  • Currently unemployed or underemployed or a student/recent graduate
  • Have not previously participated in a federal youth employment program
  • 30 years of age or younger, Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or have refugee status
  • Not currently a paid employee at UNBC
  • Must be a post-secondary graduate

Our Commitment to Diversity and Employment Equity

The University of Northern British Columbia is fully committed to creating and maintaining an equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment that is accessible to all. We are devoted to ensuring a welcoming, safe, and inclusive campus free from harassment, bullying, and discrimination. This commitment is woven into our motto and mission. In the Dakelh language, UNBC’s motto ‘En Cha Huná translates to “he/she/they also live” and means respect for all living things. Through the respect for all living things, we are able to grow and learn better together, each bringing our own unique individual differences and contributions to inspire leaders for tomorrow by influencing the world today.

Employment equity requires that we remove barriers and overcome both direct and indirect discrimination. In this way, the pool of excellent candidates increases substantially. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

About the University and its Community

Since its founding in 1990, the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) has emerged as one of Canada’s best small research-intensive universities, with a passion for teaching, discovery, people, and the North. UNBC’s excellence is derived from community-inspired research, hands-on learning, and alumni who are leading change around the world.

Since time immemorial, Indigenous peoples have walked gently on the diverse traditional territories where the University of Northern British Columbia community is grateful to live, work, learn, and play. We are committed to building and nurturing relationships with Indigenous peoples, we acknowledge their traditional lands, and we thank them for their hospitality. UNBC’s largest campus in Prince George is located on the traditional unceded territory of the Lheidli T’enneh, in the spectacular landscape near the geographic centre of beautiful British Columbia.

UNBC’s three regional campuses are located in Quesnel, Fort St. John, and Terrace. The South-Central campus in Quesnel is situated on the traditional territory of the Lhtako Dené (Red Bluff Band), Nazko, Lhoosk’uz Dené Nation (Kluskus Band), and Esdilagh First Nations (formerly Alexandria Band). Lhtako, Nazko, and Lhoosk’uz are Dakelh First Nations, and Esdilagh is a member of the Tsilhqot’in Nation. The Peace River-Liard campus in Fort St. John is situated on the traditional territory of the Doig River, Blueberry River and Halfway River First Nations. They are the Dunne-Za people. The Northwest campus in Terrace is situated on traditional Ts’msyen (Tsimshian) territory of the Kitsumkalum and Kitselas First Nations. It includes a satellite campus in the coastal community of Prince Rupert.

UNBC consistently ranks in the top three in its category in the annual Maclean’s university rankings. UNBC also recently placed among the top five per cent of higher education institutions worldwide by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. With a diverse student population, the University is friendly, inclusive, and supportive. Prince George is a city of ~74,000 people with impressive cultural, educational, and recreational amenities. For more information about living and working in Prince George, please refer to and Make your mark with this leading post-secondary institution.

To Apply:

Please email a single PDF file containing your Cover Letter, CV, a copy of your unofficial transcripts, and the names and contact information of 3 references, to Heather Bryan and Caroline Lesage ( by May 15, 2024. Please include your last name and UNBC Research Skills Development Trainee Application in the file name.

Preferred start date is August 19, 2024. The position will be a 6.5-month preliminary contract with the possibility of extension (pending available funding). Salary is $22/hour based on a 37.5-hour work week plus Statutory benefits (WCB/EI/CPP/EHT) and 4% vacation pay.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. We thank all applicants for their interest in UNBC however, only those applicants selected for further consideration will be contacted.