PhD in Petroleum Geochemistry

The Canadian Research Chair in Petroleum Geochemistry and Reservoir Characterization in the Department of Geology at Saint Mary's University is currently advertising for a PhD student (entry September 1st, 2017) to conduct a molecular geochemical survey of Scotian Shelf and on-shore produced oils and extracts from potential source rocks. The PhD student will work on the topics of organic geochemistry/petroleum geochemistry using molecular (biomarker) proxy data for Mesozoic sections of both marine and lacustrine environments with the objective of developing enhanced techniques for the evaluation of oil-source rock/oil-oil correlation, prospectively evaluation of organic-rich source rocks, and the reconstruction of paleodepositional environments along the Scotian Margin.

Applicants are required to have, or be about to obtain, a Master degree, or equivalent, in geological science, chemistry, environmental science, or related field areas. Candidates with the following qualifications are encouraged to apply:

  • Strong academic background;
  • Passionate research interest and a background in geochemistry or chemistry;
  • Proficient scientific writing skills and high motivation to produce publishable results;
  • Very good command of spoken and written English, i.e. TOEFL IBT (overall score of 88 or better, minimum score of 20 in each of the four components: listening, speaking, writing, reading) or TOEFL PBT (paper based test, minimum score of 570, minimum essay score of 5).

This degree offers:

  • A cutting-edge research project using state-of-the-art, modern analytical equipment;
  • A training program tailored to the needs of the student;
  • The ability to present research findings at national and international conferences;
  • A friendly and multi-disciplinary environment;
  • Attractive salary in accordance with Canadian University standards;
  • Excellent future career opportunities.

Expression of interest including CV, academic transcript and the names of three references should be sent to Prof. G. Todd Ventura (

Closing date: 1st May, 2017

Starting date: 1st Sept, 2017

For informal enquiries and further information about this research project and the academic setting of SMU contact Dr. Todd Ventura, email:

posted: 14 March 2017     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.