GC Jobs

PhD Student in Geology, Metamorphic Petrology - Research Affiliate Program

Reference number: RSN22J-055095-000091
Selection process number: 2022-RSN-EA-RAPBUR-LMS-211781
Natural Resources Canada - Geological Survey of Canada - Lands and Minerals Sector
Kelowna (British Columbia)
Winter 2023 (January) to Summer 2026 (Spring); It is expected that the student will work approximately 10 to 15 hours per week.
$26.72 to $34.59 per hour (Salary will be determined by the student’s academic level & weekly work schedule.)

For further information on the organization, please visit Natural Resources Canada

Geological Survey of Canada

Closing date: 17 August 2022 - 23:59, Pacific Time

Who can apply: Students enrolled or able to enroll in a PhD program at the University of British Columbia (proof will be required before the start date) with specialization in Earth Sciences, Geology, or other relevant specialization.

To be considered for RAP opportunities, students must be:
1. Recognized as having full-time student status by the post-secondary academic institution at which they are presently enrolled OR be a part-time student who is recognized by their academic institution as a having a disability;
2. The minimum age to work in the province or territory where the job is located; and
3. Enrolled in an academic program that requires research as part of their curriculum.

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


Background: The Yukon-Tanana terrane (YTT) of the Canadian Cordillera includes meta-sedimentary and meta-igneous basement rocks originally rifted from western Laurentian margin in the Late Devonian, and arc-related rocks formed on or adjacent to these basement units. The terrane accreted to the Laurentian margin in the Permian-Jurassic, during a series of tectonic events that produced the northern Cordilleran orogen. YTT underwent polyphase deformation and regional metamorphism during this interval, but the distribution, timing and tectonic significance of these episodes remain uncertain.

Regional metamorphic grade in the Yukon Tanana terrane ranges from greenschist to eclogite facies, but the distribution of grade is largely undocumented and the age(s) of deformation is only locally constrained. The location and nature of boundaries between contrasting metamorphic/structural domains are poorly understood and tectonic models of the area remain speculative.

Research objective: The objective of this PhD project will be to comprehensively document the character and age of regional metamorphism across the southeastern part of the Yukon Tanana terrane in southern Yukon. A further aim is to gain an enhanced understanding of the crustal architecture of the area by integrating modern metamorphic (P-T), structural and geochronological data with the results of new geological mapping. In collaboration with one other PhD student and survey partners, this research will result in significant contributions to understanding the tectonic evolution of YTT, a critical prerequisite to exploring its mineral potential. It is anticipated that, in the course of this work, the student will also identify process-orientated questions and develop research plans to address these.

Methods: Detailed work will be carried out in selected areas across southeastern YTT, in collaboration with a regional mapping program.

This project will include a combination of helicopter-supported field work, petrography (in conjunction with EPMA and SEM analyses), phase equilibria modelling, and various types of geo/thermochronology (U-Pb and 40Ar/39Ar).

Supervisory team:
Dr. Brendan Dyck (supervisor – UBC Okanagan)
Dr. David Moynihan (co-supervisor – Yukon Geological Survey)
Dr. Nathan Cleven (co-supervisor – Geological Survey of Canada)

Training: The candidate will participate in two remote field seasons (2023 & 2024) where they will receive immersive field-based training from Drs. Moynihan and Cleven (Yukon Geological Survey & Geological Survey of Canada). The candidate will also have considerable opportunities to gain proficiencies in SEM, EPMA and LA-ICP-MS based chemical and microstructural analyses using the in-house FiLTER facilities at UBCO as well as expertise with phase equilibria modelling and geothermobarometry.

Intent of the process

The intention is to staff one student position for completion of a Doctor of Philosophy degree at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan.

Positions to be filled: 1

Information you must provide

Your résumé.

A covering letter "of approximately 500 words outlining your interest in the position, and relevant education/experience."

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

• Currently enrolled or willing and able to enroll at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan in a Doctoral program with specialization relevant to the duties of the position.
• Completion of an MSc or degree equivalent in Earth Sciences, Geology, or a related field.

Degree equivalency

In the context of student recruitment in the federal public service, experience can be acquired through studies, work experience or volunteer activities.

• Research/fieldwork experience related to the Earth Sciences.

If you possess any of the following, your application must also clearly explain how you meet it (other qualifications)

• Experience mapping or conducting field research in metamorphic terranes.
• Familiarity with EMPA and SEM analyses.
• Familiarity with petrological modeling approaches and programs.

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

English essential

Information on language requirements

• Ability to identify metamorphic minerals both in outcrop and in thin sections.

• Adaptability
• Initiative
• Judgement
• Motivation

Conditions of employment

• Reliability Status security clearance - This factor is not used at the screening stage. The hiring department is responsible for the security clearance process.

• Pre-appointment medical clearance in accordance with the Treasury Board Occupational Health Evaluation Standard for Scientific Personnel – Field.

• Willingness and ability to travel when required.

• Willingness and physical ability to perform geological fieldwork in remote locations with challenging terrain and environmental conditions.

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

We thank all applicants for their interest in our position(s). For the purpose of this staffing process, only candidates selected for further assessment will be contacted.

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

You must provide proof of your education credentials. Transcripts and a list of courses may be required.

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

Crissy Hallock, Human Resources Advisor
Date modified: