Research assistant – casual position

Start date: April 2024

Application deadline: Will remain until filled

Supervisor: Dr. Srijak Bhatnagar

Faculty: Faculty of Science and Technology

Location: Calgary, Alberta

Plant Microbiome


The project(s) is/are focused on studying the microbial community structure and functions using 16S gene amplicons in an environmental setting to study microbial metabolisms of interest, including but not limited to glyphosate degradation. A part-time molecular microbiologist is needed by the project(s) to generate data and carry out data analysis and interpretation for the microbial community assessments.

Specific activities include, but are not limited to

The primary job duties for the part-time casual research assistant (RA-3) will include microbial assessment of plant and soil samples using 16S rRNA gene marker. This includes generating and processing high throughput DNA sequence data, deducing microbial results, creating figures and plots for publications, and writing and contributing to reports and manuscripts. This is a shortterm, part-time position. The successful candidate work with, and directly report to, Dr. Srijak Bhatnagar at Athabasca University. They will be based in Calgary, AB but able to travel and take overnight field trips, if needed.


  • A completed BSc in Microbiology, Molecular Biology, or related fields
  • Experience in microbiome data generation
  • Experience in analyzing environmental microbial sequence data
  • Understanding of microbial ecology
  • Knowledge of microbial metabolisms, especially xenobiotic degradation
  • Strong written and verbal science communication
  • Recording and maintaining workflows
  • Good organizational skills

The position is based in Calgary, Alberta.

How to apply

Qualified individuals are encouraged to submit their application by email to Srijak Bhatnagar at Applications should include (as a PDF file) a brief cover letter summarizing your skills, interests, and experience; a current resume or curriculum vitae; and the contact information for 1-2 references.

Evaluation of applications will begin immediately and will continue until a suitable candidate is found. All applicants are thanked for their interest in this position; however, only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

Athabasca University and the researchers are committed and seek to support equity in employment and research opportunities. We strongly encourage applications from Indigenous people, people of colour, people with disabilities, 2SLGBTQ+ people, women, and other historically marginalized groups. Applicants are welcome, but not required, to self-identify in their letter of application.

For more information on this Research Assistant Opportunity, please contact Srijak Bhatnagar at the contact below. Applications will be accepted until a suitable candidate is found.

Srijak Bhatnagar