GC Jobs

Research Assistant - Master's/Ph.D. in Epidemiology of Horticultural Plant Viruses - Research Affiliate Program

Reference number: AGR23J-023788-000372
Selection process number: 23-AGR-RAP-53
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada - Science and Technology Branch
Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu (Québec)
The projected start date is November 15, 2023 with an end date of March 31, 2027 (or depending on the candidate's availability or needs). It is expected that the student will work 17 hours per week.
$22.71 to $34.59 per hour (Master: $22.71 to $28.57; Doctorate: $26.72 to $34.59 - Varies as per level of education and experience.)

For further information on the organization, please visit Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

For further information on the Research Affiliate Program (RAP), please visit Research Affiliate Program (RAP)

Closing date: 3 November 2023 - 23:59, Pacific Time

Who can apply: Persons residing in Canada and Canadian citizens, permanent residents and international students* residing abroad.

* International students, with valid visas permitting work in Canada, will only be considered when no eligible, qualified Canadian citizens or permanent residents are available for the position.

To be considered for Research Affiliate Program (RAP) work opportunities, all candidates must meet the following eligibility criteria by the date of appointment:

- Be recognized as having full-time student status by an accredited Canadian post-secondary academic institution (this includes students with a disability deemed to have full-time status). Individuals pending approval of acceptance, or in the process of submitting applications are encouraged to apply as proof of enrollment will only be required prior to the start date.

- Be enrolled in an academic program that requires research as part of the curriculum.

- Be the minimum age to work in the province or territory where the job is located.

Important messages

We are committed to providing an inclusive and barrier-free work environment, starting with the hiring process. If you need to be accommodated during any phase of the evaluation process, please use the Contact information below to request specialized accommodation. All information received in relation to accommodation will be kept confidential.

Assessment accommodation

AAFC is committed to diversity and inclusion and is proud to be recognized as one of Canada’s best diversity employers. We welcome all applicants and strongly encourage candidates to self-declare if they belong to an Employment Equity designated group (i.e. Aboriginal Peoples, Persons with Disabilities, Visible Minorities or Women).

Persons are entitled to participate in the appointment process in the official language of their choice. Applicants are asked to indicate their preferred official language in their application.

Communication for this process will be sent via email. It is the responsibility of the candidate to ensure accurate contact information is provided and updated as required. Candidates who apply to this selection process should include an email address that accepts email from unknown users (some email systems block these types of email).


Are you looking for an excellent opportunity to pursue a master's or a Ph.D. in a field of the future with intellectually vibrant research topics?
Do you want to be involved in the discovery of sustainable alternatives to synthetic pesticides?
Are you curious about what a nano-MOF is and how this family of nanoparticles can contribute to the sustainable agriculture of tomorrow?
Are you interested in exploring the impact of viruses on plants?
Do you want to know more about the viral biodiversity in soil?
Are you eager to understand the impact of viruses in soil and plants functioning?
Would you like to enhance your skills in molecular biology and join a cutting-edge research team?
Or are you simply a science enthusiast looking to be part of the solutions for food security and the protection of our agroecosystems?

Come and join a dynamic team to work on:
1. The use of nano-MOFs as carriers to deliver small RNAs into plants to control viral infections and expressions.
2. The impact of nano-MOFs on the virome and soil microbiome.
3. The influence of root exudates on the activity and assembly of viral communities in the soil.
4. The involvement of viruses in carbon sequestration and nitrogen recycling processes in the soil.
5. Morphological and functional characterization of unknown viruses in mineral and organic soil.
6. Using super-predator insects and weeds to predict viral epidemic risks.

Some specific tasks include :
Field sample collections
Processing of samples in the laboratory
Data analysis
Manuscript writing

Work environment

The project will be carried out at the Research and Development Center in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, located at 430 boul. Gouin, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC, J3B 3E6. The candidate will pursue their graduate studies under the joint supervision of a partnering university professor (University of Sherbrooke, University of Montreal).

AAFC is committed to diversity and inclusion. We have several networks dedicated to ensuring that the department continues to grow as an inclusive, accessible, respectful and diverse workplace. All employees are encouraged and welcomed to join the networks and participate in their activities and events.

• The Gender and Sexual Diversity Inclusiveness Network
• The Indigenous Network Circle
• The Managers' Community
• The Persons with Disabilities Network
• The Student Panel of Representatives for Orientation, Unity and Training
• The Visible Minorities Network
• The Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Network
• The Young Professional's Network

Positions to be filled: 2

Information you must provide

Your résumé.

A covering letter "Describe how your experiences are well aligned with the job description."

A list of the courses you have taken as well as any courses that you are taking now, or that you will be taking this academic year

In order to be considered, your application must clearly explain how you meet the following (essential qualifications)

Currently enrolled or will be enrolled by the date of appointment in a Master's or Ph.D. program at a recognized Canadian post-secondary educational institution with a specialization in molecular biology, virology, phytopathology, microbiology, biotechnology, genetics, or any other relevant discipline in the field of study.

Note: Must be currently recognized as having full-time student status in the academic institution in which you are presently enrolled, pending approval of acceptance or in the process of submitting your application. Proof of enrollment will be required prior to start date and must be returning to full-time studies for your next academic term.

Degree equivalency

The following will be applied / assessed at a later date (essential for the job)

English or French

Information on language requirements

Creativity and innovation
Attention to detail

Ability to collect samples in the fields.
Ability to process samples in the laboratory.
Ability to analyze data.
Ability to write manuscripts.

The following may be applied / assessed at a later date (may be needed for the job)

Agriculture and Agri-food Canada recognizes that the diversity of its employee population contributes to its strength and integrity. We are committed to achieving employment equity and developing a highly capable workforce that is representative of Canadian Society. We encourage women (especially in non-traditional occupations), Indigenous peoples (Aboriginal peoples), persons with disabilities, and members of visible minority groups to apply and declare themselves as part of one or more of the Employment Equity groups as selection may be limited to candidates belonging to one or more of the groups.

Information on employment equity

Conditions of employment

Reliability Status security clearance - Each student hired through the Research Affiliate Program (RAP) must meet the security requirements of the position as a condition of employment, and therefore will be asked by the hiring organization to complete security-relevant documents.

Other information

The Public Service of Canada is committed to building a skilled and diverse workforce that reflects the Canadians we serve. We promote employment equity and encourage you to indicate if you belong to one of the designated groups when you apply.

Information on employment equity

Applications submitted by email will not be accepted. You must apply on-line through https://www.canada.ca/en/services/jobs/opportunities/government.html.

Persons with disabilities preventing them from applying on-line are asked to contact the email referenced below under “Contact Information”.

Candidates will be required to pay for their own travel related to assessment and successful candidates will be responsible for obtaining their own living accommodations.

Successful completion of both a RAP work assignment and your educational program may lead to a temporary or permanent federal public service position for which you meet the merit criteria and conditions of employment.


Preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents, with the exception of a job located in Nunavut, where Nunavut Inuit will be appointed first.

We thank all those who apply. Only those selected for further consideration will be contacted.

Contact information

RAP Team – Research Affiliate Program
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