Program Description

The CREATE Sustainable Synthesis program recruits undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral researchers from applicants within the Departments of Chemistry, Pharmaceutical Sciences and Chemical and Biological Engineering. Traditional Faculty of Graduate Studies program requirements will be incorporated into this interdisciplinary training model.

This program incorporates key components for a career in industry (including chemists, engineers and medicinal chemists) that are required to advance the emerging Green Economy within the Manufacturing Sector in Canada. Such manufacturers impact a broad range of industries of critical importance to the Canadian Economy including the advanced materials, agrochemical,  energy, fine chemical, mining, pharmaceutical industries, and plastics. At the cutting edge of advances for such sectors is the development of innovative technologies for realizing future sustainable manufacturing methods. At the core of such enabling technologies is catalysis. Catalysis increases production while reducing energy consumption, raw material/feedstock consumption and waste/by-product generation.

CREATE SusSyn Program Requirements:

In addition to the standard graduate student program requirements, the following CREATE SusSyn program requirements are mandatory for all trainees:

1)      Completion of 3 laboratory rotations (MSc and PhD, 2 weeks each) during Term 1. At least 1 rotation must be outside of the core discipline, including an orientation session for UBC3D infrastructure.

2)      Completion of 1 graduate level course (either for credit or audit) outside of the core discipline.

3)      Participation in a monthly seminar series for all CREATE trainees (MSc, PhD, PDF) throughout the academic year.

4)      Completion of 2 (MSc) or 4 (PhD, PDF) supplementary skills short-courses focusing on:

Business Basics

Patent Law

Project Management


5)      Participation in the Annual Symposium at the end of each summer.

6)      Completion of an industrial internship to be carried out in either an industrial or academic setting. Note: Industrial internships may be 4 to 8 months in duration, depending upon the industry partner. Undergraduate and Postdoctoral Fellows will ONLY work on Academic Internships. Academic internships can only be 4 months long and must be an industry led project within the academic laboratory.


Future graduates will possess advanced skills that will prepare them for employment in established industries and also small-business and entrepreneurial ventures. Within Canada, graduates of the CREATE SusSyn program with expertise in catalysis will be industry ready employees for the following manufacturing sectors: agrochemical, petrochemical, pharmaceutical, biotechnology, personal care products, fine chemical, mining, paper and paper-products, biomass conversion for the energy sector and for value-added bio-derived products, new materials for the plastics and automotive sector, and advanced electronic materials and photovoltaics for the energy sector. We anticipate that graduates of the CREATE SusSyn program will become leaders in Canadian companies that generate solutions to local and global challenges for sustainable manufacturing methods. In this way, a CREATE SusSyn graduate will help propel Canadian companies to the forefront of innovations within their fields.

How to apply: Please contact us at if you are interested in joining the CREATE SusSyn training program.  Please indicate which department (Chemistry, Chemical and Biological Engineering or Pharmaceutical Sciences) with which you intend to apply.