Junior Developer

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WestGrid Published: March 19, 2019
Remote, British Columbia
Internship Type
Hours per week
Start Date
End Date


About Us

WestGrid is a not-for-profit organization that works with other Canadian regional organizations and Compute Canada to provide the Advanced Research Computing (ARC) tools that researchers need.  These tools range from powerful computers and storage resources to specialized software and data management tools - combining them with a service layer of technical expertise, support personnel, and training.

We help any academic researcher or collaborator, from any discipline, location, or institution in Canada tackle complex scientific problems, manage big data sets, reduce processing times, build scientific platforms, and collaborate with colleagues across Canada and the world.

Please visit this page to learn more about WestGrid.


The Role

The Junior Platforms Developer is responsible for software and service development projects associated with scientific gateways for researchers within western Canada. This could range from developing online tools for research groups to submit their work to our high performance computing systems, to helping implement filesharing services to deploying cloud based platforms to enable international research collaborations.


WestGrid is a distributed organization throughout Western Canada.  They primarily work remotely from home-based offices. A Western Canada location is preferred for new employees.

What we Offer

WestGrid is a team of highly collaborative, enthusiastic people who believe passionately in the importance of supporting Canada’s research community.

You’ll work remotely via video conferencing with team members from across Canada, to support some of Canada’s brightest minds, including current and future Nobel prize winners. You will help enable research that is world-class to solve some of our biggest scientific challenges, such as mapping the human brain, curing diseases, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

We offer competitive pay, professional development and training, a comprehensive benefits package, and matching RRSP contributions.  We provide an inclusive, flexible and supportive working environment.

Duties and responsibilities


  • Software development to create, extend, implement, and maintain portals, scientific gateways, and advanced computing software tools and databases.
  • Development of related middleware and infrastructure services.
  • Provide support as appropriate to various researchers for their portal and platform project needs.
  • Collaborate effectively with technical and non-technical colleagues and research staff.
  • Create internal processes and user documentation.
  • Participate in Compute Canada’s national technical teams to contribute to the development of national services and support.
  • Advise senior management on new services, resources, and opportunities and contribute to an ongoing needs assessment to address the gaps in service delivery for platform and portal projects.

Knowledge and skills

Qualifications and Competencies

The developer should have expertise in the development, implementation and management of web portals in the cloud. We expect that this post will work closely with research groups who are experts in their fields, but may have limited experience with modern cloud-based web development. The developer therefore needs to work collaboratively and flexibly in guiding very strong research groups. This is a very exciting environment to work in as the projects span a very wide range, supporting for instance world-leading research astronomical data portals, biogenomics analysis gateways and big data sets in digital humanities. As each project can have it’s own unique science, processes, governance and architectures we prefer broad experience rather than specialized, in-depth familiarity with a narrow specialty.

Generally we prefer the developer to have a computer science degree, together with a few years experience in a range of web development projects.

Minimum qualifications:

  • Strong communication, planning, and time management skills
  • Interest in advanced computing technology, research, or data management
  • Maintaining a current awareness of emerging trends in programming and development
  • Ability to work creatively, collaboratively, and effectively both as a team member and independently
  • Self-starter with strong self-management skills
  • Ability to organize and manage multiple priorities
  • Ability to quickly learn and incorporate new programming languages and technologies.
  • Able to express complex concepts in plain language to reach broader audiences

Preferred technical qualifications (coursework exposure is considered sufficient experience):

  • Experience with at least one web development language (Java, Javascript, Ruby, Python, Perl, ..)
  • Ability to generate good quality and usable code
  • Ability to understand legacy code, and adapt or improve it
  • Experience working with IAAS clouds
  • Experience with agile development methodologies

The following are not required but would be an asset:

  • Previous experience working in and access to a suitable home office environment
  • Experience with scientific or research-oriented projects
  • Experience with UI design and user experience methods
  • Experience in software planning, testing, and change management
  • Front end web development experience
  • Bilingual in French and English.

Education required

A university degree in Computer Science, Computational Science or a related technical field, or equivalent practical experience

Eligibility criteria

Career-Launcher Internships are funded by the Government of Canada under the Youth Employment Strategy. For program criteria information visit their website.


Qualified interns are:

  • Starting the internship within two years of receiving their post-secondary diploma
  • Underemployed (employed below their level of education or work part-time)
  • No more than 30 years of age at the start of the internship
  • Canadian citizens, permanent residents or persons granted refugee status in Canada*
  • Legally allowed to work according to the relevant provincial and Canadian legislation and regulations
  • Not receiving employment insurance during their internship
  • Available to work for at least six months

*Refugee protection must be conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Persons awaiting refugee status, as well as those who hold a temporary visitor visa, student visa or work visa, are ineligible to participate in a Youth Employment Strategy initiative.

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