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PhD and MS Student Opportunities in Dissolved Organic Matter and Black Carbon Biogeochemistry

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Troy, New York
Closing date
Dec 3, 2021

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Biogeosciences, Geochemistry, Ocean Science
Career Level
Student / Graduate
Education Level
Job Type
Relocation Cost
No Relocation
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We are looking for inquisitive, persistent, and dynamic students who are interested in pursuing research in dissolved organic matter biogeochemistry and fire-derived carbon cycling in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). Our lab group investigates the sources, processing, and fate of dissolved organic matter to evaluate and constrain environmental drivers of regional and global carbon cycling. We specialize in measuring black carbon (e.g., soot and charcoal), which is mainly formed from fire and is a biologically resistant and environmentally long-lived form of carbon. Recent work is focused on dissolved organic matter and black carbon biogeochemistry in anthropogenically impacted and fire-affected watersheds and on the persistence of petrogenic organic products in aquatic environments. In our lab, we use a variety of analytical techniques, including optical spectroscopy, stable carbon isotopes, and molecular markers. More information about our research group can be found at:

We aim to recruit students who are interested in interdisciplinary research that is rooted in organic geochemistry and incorporates aspects of hydrology and biology in marine and freshwater environments. A degree of comfort with analytical chemistry and associated techniques is preferred, but not required. For more information on student opportunities and graduate studies at RPI, please email Dr. Sasha Wagner ( with your resume and a short description of your research background and interests.

Prospective students are strongly encouraged to apply by the January 1, 2022 deadline. The initial review of applications begins soon thereafter and candidates are considered for the RPI Graduate Research Fellowship. The GRE is optional for the spring and fall 2022 application cycles. Interested applicants should submit their application materials via the RPI graduate admissions portal (

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