MS/PhD Research Assistantship, hydrogeochemistry in mining environments via AGU

University of Idaho

Moscow, ID, United States 🇺🇸

The Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Idaho has a graduate research assistantship starting in summer 2021 for students interested in mining-impacted environments and hydrogeochemistry. This research position will involve constructing benchtop experiments and hydrogeochemical models for evaluating the transport of nano- to micro-scale particles in backfill waste rock. This project will involve field sampling in the Powder River Basin and laboratory experiments in the Hydrogeochemistry Lab at the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho. PhD student with MS is preferred, but an MS student with substantial field and laboratory experience will be considered. Interested students may contact Dr. Jeff Langman at [email protected] for more information and apply online at

To be considered for this research assistantship, department applications are due by January 15th, 2021, and graduate school applications are due by February 1, 2021.

Dr. Langman is a hydrogeochemist in the Geological Sciences Department at the University of Idaho who specializes in metal mobility within mining-impacted environments. This research assistantship will be funded by the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement for assistance in improving the water quality of backfill aquifers in coal-mining regions. Field samples will be collected from an active mine site in the Powder River Basin for insertion into benchtop column experiments to examine the transport of nano- to micro-scale particles with weathering given different compaction and amendment conditions. Concurrently, hydrogeochemical models will be developed to evaluate the primary parameters of solute generation during saturation and vertical transport of early groundwater as a backfill aquifer evolves to an equilibrated state.

What we are looking for: The ideal candidate is passionate about and has experience with weathering experiments and hydrogeochemical modeling. Prior experience in working in a research laboratory and conducting field sampling is desirable; familiarity with thermodynamic databases for geochemical models is necessary. We are looking for a candidate who has (i) an interest in metal mobility research, (ii) good oral communication and writing skills, (iii) attention to detail, and (iv) willingness and ability to work independently.

What we offer: The position offers a competitive stipend, a tuition waiver, and subsidized health insurance. Located in the rolling hills of the Palouse along the northern Rockies, the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Idaho ( is a nationally and internationally recognized department that offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Geology. Our students are given the opportunity to pursue coursework in a variety of topics in hydrology and geochemistry.

The University of Idaho is an equal opportunity affirmative action employer. Since 1889, the University of Idaho has provided motivated students with a transformative higher education experience that prepares them to solve real-world problems and achieve success in their lives and careers. Beginning with our beautiful residential campus in Moscow, the university’s reach extends throughout Idaho, serving over 11,000 students with educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene, and Idaho Falls; nine Research and Extension centers; and Extension offices in 42 counties. One of the nation’s land-grant research universities, the University of Idaho is a noted national leader in student-centered learning and interdisciplinary research that promotes public service. Our work serves businesses and communities, advancing the pursuit of diversity, citizenship, and global outreach.

GRE score reporting is not mandatory and will not be considered for application evaluation. In your application letter, please mention how you will contribute to the project with emphasis on your current skillset and research experience/interest. Shortlisted candidates will be contacted for a virtual meeting in early January 2021. Interested applicants are welcome to send a brief letter of interest and a copy of their CV and transcripts via email to Dr. Jeff Langman ([email protected]).