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Supported Graduate Student Positions (Fall 2022)

PhD Positions:

The Department is seeking to support two full-time doctoral students for Fall 2022. We anticipate the support will be available through the completion of their degrees, and will include a stipend of approximately $30,000/year plus tuition remission. Dr. Elizabeth Hewitt and Dr. David Tonjes have a five-year, potentially-renewable contract with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to characterize the state’s waste stream.

This project includes extensive field work and data analysis. We anticipate conducting waste sorts across New York State for approximately 8-10 weeks per year, and then creating site-specific and comprehensive reports on these efforts. In addition, we are completing the digitization of approximately 200 previously conducted waste sorts and the USEPA model output and will want to analyze these data separately and in conjunction with the information we generate about New York State specifically. We also intend to add other related waste projects as we gain support for other efforts, although our intention is for these two positions to be primarily but perhaps not exclusively involved with the New York State project. This creates ample opportunities for publications and the development of dissertation projects.

We seek students with a degree in engineering and/or natural sciences who also have interest in social aspects of technical problems. Having completed or being currently enrolled in an MS program where the subject matter can relate to waste studies is a major advantage.

More information about the NYSDEC research program and related research is available at Please feel free to contact Dr. David Tonjes ( or Dr. Elizabeth Hewitt ( or MaryPat Taveras (department Graduate Program Coordinator, ) with any questions you may have.

For more details, please see our video   New York State Waste Characterization Research Project