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10 Years, 400 Jobs: Stfx Earth Sciences Marks Milestone

StFX’s Department of Earth Sciences is marking a tremendous milestone. Over the past 10 years, the department has hired over 400 people from external research grant funding secured by its six full-time faculty members.

University figures show that on average, the research monies that faculty members have brought into campus through earth sciences, environmental and climate science projects, has resulted in creating about 40 jobs a year.

The jobs run the gamut from undergraduate summer positions to year-long post-doc and faculty posts. The outstanding record of job creation provides many benefits to the university and the community, department members note.

The accomplishment benefits research at the university, enhancing its role as a modern academic institution, and helps support the local economy.

At the same time as research funding creates jobs in the community, it also helps in educating and training highly qualified personnel — undergraduate, graduate and post doctoral students as well as junior faculty. The job creation provides valuable training for students and faculty, and raises the capacity of the institution to have highly qualified personnel, setting faculty at the university in a competitive position when seeking research funding from tri-council agencies. Research based job creation also contributes to keeping people in the province.

Department members say the success can be attributed in part to the fact that faculty members consider research an integral part of their job, and that in addition to their undergraduate teaching, they have put in much effort in training and emphasizing graduate studies. Earth Sciences faculty members recognize that continuous success obtaining funding from tri-council agencies is strongly dependent on the capacity of the department to educate graduate students. The department offers a master’s program, and most faculty supervise PhD students through other universities.