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2105 – 8th Street East

Saskatoon, SK, S7H 5N9

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Research Technician – Life Sciences (1 position available)

Research Technician – Life Sciences (1 position available)


Contact information:

Bernardo Predicala, Ph.D.

Research Scientist – Engineering

Prairie Swine Centre Inc.

Tel: 306 667 7444

Email: bernardo.predicala@usask.ca


Details of position available

Job Title: Research Technician – Life Sciences (1 position available)

Hourly wage rate: $15.89 (plus mandatory benefits)

Number of hours per week: 37.50

Number of weeks: 15 (with possibility of extension to Sep 2021)

Start date: ASAP

Job location: Prairie Swine Centre barn, #1 Floral Road, Saskatoon, SK (personal transport required)

Target employee: Newcomer Youth (up to 30 years old) – new immigrants or refugees


Tasks and responsibilities

The Participant youth will assist in the maintenance of the Prairie Swine Centre (PSC) research facility and in the conduct of on-going Engineering research trials, with the following main duties and responsibilities:

  1. Assist in the operation and maintenance of electronic and mechanical systems in the PSC research facility
  2. Assist in the preparation of the experimental set-up, i.e., installation, testing, and operation of electronic equipment (sensors, controllers, data loggers, etc.); preparation of facilities, equipment, materials and supplies needed for the trials;
  3. Assist in the operation and maintenance of facilities and electronic equipment to be used in the experiments, and care of the experimental subjects and materials as required;
  4. Conduct associated record keeping: downloading electronic data, data entry and analysis.

Specific Skills

Install, maintain and service equipment; Calibrate electronic equipment and instruments; Assist in inspecting, testing and adjusting electronic components; Set up and operate specialized and standard test equipment to diagnose, test and analyze the performance of electrical and electronic components, assemblies and systems

Make adjustments and minor repairs to heating, cooling, ventilation, plumbing and electrical systems, and contact tradespersons for major repairs; Perform other routine maintenance jobs such as painting and repair; Perform minor repairs on small equipment

Strong communication and interpersonal skills, excellent attention to detail, organization, and record keeping

Willing to travel periodically and complete tasks requiring extended work hours when necessary

Capable of physical tasks such as lifting, carrying a hand-held sprayer, walking in the field and bending.

Skills that are an asset but not mandatory: Farm background and/or farm machinery experience, previous research experience and good mechanical aptitude.


Field of Studies

Agricultural/environmental research – knowledge of scientific research process, preferably in the field of livestock agriculture or environmental studies, as the job will involve experimental work in this area

Electronics and mechanical systems – familiarity and background in electronic and mechanical devices will be desirable, as the job will involve the operation and care of these devices in carrying out the research trials


On-site Supervisor: Senior Technical Support Manager

Mentor: Research Scientist – Engineering

Supervision plan

  1. In accordance with PSC SOP for new employees, the Supervisor (in coordination with the Mentor) will initially train the Participant on all the tasks and activities that the youth will be expected to carry out as part of their duties and responsibilities.
  2. The Participant will then be allowed to perform the specific tasks, under close supervision by the Supervisor, until the Participant is deemed by the Supervisor to be sufficiently proficient in performing the tasks properly and safely without supervision.
  3. Once the Participant attains proficiency in most tasks, the Supervisor will meet with the Participant daily at the start of the work day to plan the Participant’s assigned tasks for the day. The Supervisor will check on the work of the Participant at various intervals throughout the work day, providing inputs and feedback as needed, and to ensure that the tasks are performed properly and safely. At the end of the work day, the Participant and Supervisor will meet again to discuss the completed tasks and any issues encountered, in case any tasks were not completed.
  4. Whenever possible, the Participant will be asked to contribute possible solutions to any issues related to their tasks, as well as to planning and executing tasks more efficiently, in order to demonstrate progress in their proficiency and competence.

Mentoring plan

  1. On a weekly basis, the Mentor will meet with both the Participant and Supervisor to discuss the overall progress of the Participant with respect to the tasks assigned to the Participant.
  2. During initial meetings with the Mentor, the overall long-term personal and career goals of the Participant will be discussed, and a plan will be established to help the Participant achieve their long-term goals. The plan will include the sequence of steps that need to be taken, as well as identifying the skills and competencies that need to be learned to help the Participant attain the goals.
  3. Subsequent meetings with the Mentor will focus on assessing the progress of the Participant with respect to carrying out the planned steps and learning the needed skills, with the Mentor providing advice and feedback to the Participant to facilitate progress towards achieving the goals.
  4. Whenever possible, the Mentor will find opportunities for the Participant to gain experience on interacting with clients and other researchers, and to enable them to participate in activities that may be outside their regular assigned duties but are deemed useful to developing the needed skills and experience (i.e., field visits, industry meetings, etc.).

Retention plan

Depending on the performance of the Participant, additional funding may be available to extend the appointment of the youth as a casual employee of PSC beyond the CSJ appointment. This can open the way to becoming a regular PSC employee, subject to demonstrated exemplary performance of the Participant and the availability of funds.

Download a pdf version of the job description CSJ – Engineering Technician