Skip to content

Undergrad Research Opportunities 03/22/2018, updated 3/28

Undergraduate field research: amphibians and microbes in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, CA.

 

OVERVIEW

An NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) fellowship is open for an undergraduate student to participate in a project studying Sierra Nevada amphibians affected by a chytrid fungal pathogen, and the role of the skin microbiome in disease resistance. The aim of this research is to understand if symbiotic microbes on the skin of frogs explain why some frog populations are able to co-exist with the fungal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), while other frog populations suffer catastrophic declines. The successful candidate will work closely with a senior researcher to conduct surveys of frog population persistence, pathogen infection status, and symbiotic microbes.  This work entails strenuous long-distance hiking, back-packing, handling of sensitive amphibians, and collection of microbial skin swabs. The incumbent will receive experience and training in field ecology, disease ecology, and microbial ecology.

 

SUPPORT, DATES, LOCATION

This fellowship includes a stipend of $500/week. Housing is provided at the Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Lab (SNARL). Limited funds for travel are available. Dates of the field work are approximately July 15 through August 30. Exact dates to be determined.

 

QUALIFICATIONS AND ELIGIBILITY

To be considered for this position, you must have have extensive backpacking experience, including backpacking at high elevations (>10,000 feet). Must be able to safely carry a heavy pack long distances over rugged terrain, be comfortable spending days to weeks in the backcountry, working in remote areas often in uncomfortable conditions (e.g., inclement weather, mosquitoes, no access to phone, internet, running water while in the backcountry) and be in excellent physical condition. You must have a strong work ethic and a passion for field research, as well as the sensitivity and attention to detail required for handling fragile amphibians and microbial samples. Must have own backpacking equipment, including broken-in boots, tent, and pack. The ideal candidate will have a strong interest in microbial ecology or disease ecology.

 

You must be an undergraduate student (enrolled in a degree program in biology, ecology, or related field, part-time or full-time, leading to a baccalaureate or associate degree); students graduating in Spring 2018 generally are not eligible.  Must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or permanent resident. Students from underrepresented groups and institutions with limited research opportunities are especially encouraged to apply.

 

APPLICATIONS

Applications should include the following: current transcripts (unofficial OK), resume, 3 references (include reference’s name, position, affiliation, and context from which he/she knows you), and a statement of interest specifically describing (1) why you are interested in the position; (2) your qualifications, including field research and experience backpacking at high elevations and in remote areas (be specific about when, where, under what conditions you have experience); (3) your professional goals; (4) specify your dates of availability.

 

Where to send applications:

Send all application materials, PREFERABLY AS A SINGLE PDF FILE, to Andrea Jani (jania-at-hawaii.edu). Name the application file with the applicant’s name. For example: Doe_Jane.pdf.

 

ALL APPLICATION MATERIALS MUST BE RECEIVED BY FRIDAY, MARCH 23, 2018.  Incomplete applications will not be considered.

 

Alaska REU

 

We are seeking enthusiastic undergraduate researchers interested in summer field research in Alaska for two Research Experience for Undergraduates

(REU) positions in the Bret-Harte and Ruess labs at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.  Our overall research objective is to understand the consequences of potential future changes in arctic vegetation for arctic ecosystems and the rest of the world.  In this project, we are focusing on the mechanisms by which increasing abundance of large deciduous shrubs in tundra ecosystems may alter the near-surface cycling of C and N, and feedbacks to further vegetation change. You will assist with fieldwork in arctic tundra and laboratory work consisting of tasks such as plant sorting and data entry.

You will collaborate closely with the principal investigator, graduate students, and technicians to develop an independent research project of your own that will build on the ongoing research, and will present your work at an informal symposium at the Toolik Field Station. In addition, you will attend weekly seminars on the research at the station.  One student will be based at the Toolik Field Station, north of the Brooks Range in arctic Alaska (http://toolik.alaska.edu), which is the focus of research by nearly

>100 scientists who work on a variety of terrestrial and aquatic ecology

projects.  The other student will be based in Fairbanks, Alaska, with frequent trips camping in the boreal forest, and some time at Toolik Field Station.  Both positions will last approximately 10 weeks, starting in mid-June, though there is some flexibility.

 

Class background in plant ecology, botany, ecosystem ecology, statistics, and computer science would be an advantage.  Experience in field or laboratory, experience with data analysis, and experience working in a remote field site is preferred.  You should have skills with plant identification, data collecting and recording, data manipulation in Excel, and data analysis. You must be willing to work in the field, occasionally under adverse weather conditions.  A valid U.S. drivers’s license is preferred.  Competent, careful, emotionally mature, and enthusiastic people desired!  We want the work to be both fun and challenging.  You must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and currently enrolled in an undergraduate degree program, with graduation expected no sooner than fall 2017.  You must provide a copy of your social security card at the time of employment.  Women and minorities are especially encouraged to apply.

 

If you are interested in this position, send 1) a copy of your resume, including the names and contact information for 3 references, 2) a list of your coursework in biology, ecology, chemistry, and math/statistics, and 3) a cover letter than explains why you are interested, describes your background and research experience, and includes anything that you think would convince us that you are the most appropriate person for this position, to Syndonia Bret-Harte, msbretharte@alaska.edu by March 25, 2018.  We will contact you to discuss the position.

 

 

Summer Research Assistant: Conservation Biological Control and Sustainable Agriculture

 

Title: Biological Science Aide  Series: 0404  Grade: GS2 or GS3 Vacancy Announcement Number: Seasonal L/A  Location: USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Lab, Sidney, Montana

 

Job Description/Duties: The USDA, Agriculture Research Service, Northern Plains Agriculture Research Laboratory in Sidney, MT is seeking an enthusiastic and hardworking individual to serve as a biological science aide on projects examining the influence of landscape structure and crop diversity on pest insects and their natural enemies (e.g. ladybeetles, parasitoid wasps).  The research is focused on developing ecologically-based, sustainable and environmentally friendly approaches to pest management in agricultural systems.  This position will involve a mixture of field work (~50%), and lab work to sort samples and identify insect pests and their natural enemies (~50%).  The successful candidate will gain hands on experience with insect field sampling methods, set up and maintenance of field experiments and insect rearing and identification techniques, as well as the chance to work with the diverse insect fauna associated with cropping systems in a team oriented research environment.

 

Salary: $11.68 (GS-2) or $12.74 (GS-3) per hour depending on experience and education. The candidate will receive overtime pay when working above the base work schedule of 40 hours a week.  Housing is not covered, but dorm-style shared housing is available on location for ~$148 per month, including utilities.

 

Dates: May-September 2018 (this is a 16-week appointment with the possibility of extension).  Please specify your available start and end dates in your application.

 

Qualifications: The candidate must be a US citizen, with a valid driver’s license.  Additionally, the candidate should be physically fit, and comfortable spending time outside in uncomfortable field conditions (hot, biting insects etc.). Willingness to work long days, and weekends when necessary is also a must. Undergraduate course work in ecology or entomology, and previous field and lab work experience is preferred but not required.

 

Application process: Please send cover letter, resume and names and contact information of two references (electronically) in a single file to Dr.

Tatyana Rand (tatyana.rand@ars.usda.gov).

 

Open Period: Evaluation of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. For more information on our research program visit our website at www.ars.usda.gov/npa/nparl or contact us directly.

 

USDA is an equal opportunity employer.

Reasonable Accommodation:  If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, or have questions regarding reasonable accommodation and/or accessibility for any part of the application and hiring process, please contact the Disability Program Manager on 202-720-6161 or through the DC Relay Service on 202-855-1234 (TDD).

 

 

Rock Climbing-Based Undergraduate Field Research Assistant College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences

 

Get real-life field experience, rock climbing skills, and have fun!

 

When: May 2018 – August 2018

 

About the Assistantship: This individual will be assisting with fieldwork and data collection in the Red River Gorge, Kentucky.  Duties include top-rope belaying (keeping rock climbers safe using a rope system), lead belaying, and setting up safe anchor and rappel systems on bolted anchors.  This individual may also take plant samples, help designate plots used for data collection, use ground-based remote sensing techniques to capture high-quality images of plot areas, and organize this data.

 

Education/Skills/Experience:

Required:

–        Able to live in a front-country campsite for most days of the week

–        Comfortable being on rappel for a significant period of time

–        Have access to basic camping equipment (sleeping bag, ground pad, backpack)

–        Have access to basic climbing equipment (rope, shoes, harness, belay/rappel device)

–        Has access to a form of transportation

Preferred:

–        Able to lead belay/top-rope belay

–        Able to rappel with multiple rappel devices

–        Able to sport-climb at a 5.10 level

–        Has experience doing fieldwork

 

Lodging: We will be staying at Miguel’s Pizza Campground located in Slade, Kentucky for research days.

Miguel’s Pizza is a restaurant, campground, gear shop combination, complete with showers, laundry, running water and bathrooms. Camping will be in tents.

 

Training: There is a ropes-systems training for this position if the applicant is unsure, or unclear, of the safety systems described in the assistantship description.

 

Compensation: This assistantship is eligible for research credits through The Ohio State University.

Monetary compensation is possible, but not guaranteed at the moment.

 

Contact: Please contact Jordan Reding at jordreding@gmail.com with a resume and a few sentences on why you are interested.

 

 

Arizona REU

 

Are you an undergraduate student who is interested in ecology, plant biology, and sustainability? The Hall Lab at Arizona State University is looking for an enthusiastic and motivated undergraduate student to participate in research activities in urban ecology during the summer of 2018. The participant will work with faculty, graduate students, and technicians to explore how and why people manage their yards, and the consequences of those choices for biodiversity and outdoor water use. The student will work with team members to conduct field work in residential yards and Sonoran Desert parks across the Phoenix Metropolitan Area.

 

Metro Phoenix, Arizona, is situated in the northern Sonoran Desert, which is home to the iconic saguaro cactus and charismatic desert animal species.  ASU is located in Tempe, a lively and vibrant college town with accessible public transportation and amenities.

 

This REU opportunity is a 10-week program that runs from mid-May to mid- August, 2018. The successful applicant will be awarded a $5,000 stipend, and up to $3,000 for room and board. Additionally, funding is available for the REU student to prepare and present a poster at the January 2019 CAP LTER All Scientists Meeting in Tempe, AZ.

 

About the Project

The Hall Lab at Arizona State University explores ecological patterns and processes in human-dominated ecosystems to find solutions that will benefit people and nature. As part of a NSF-funded Macrosystems grant, the Hall Lab seeks to explore patterns of biodiversity and ecosystem services in urban areas. Documenting the social drivers and benefits of native and other plant species will help to inform city managers about sustainable urban practices.

 

Project Timeline

During the first three weeks of the REU program, the student will work on directed readings of the literature, and will “apprentice” with members of our teams. By the end of three weeks, we expect the student to complete a draft proposal of her/his research project. The following several weeks will be dedicated to collecting and analyzing data under our guidance.

During the final two weeks, the student will write a report of her/his work and prepare an oral presentation of project findings for our research group.

 

Minimum Qualifications

The successful candidate must:

  • Have an interest in ecological research.
  • Have excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Be a quick learner and be able to work on projects with minimal direct supervision.
  • Be able to work outside during the summer in Phoenix and be able to perform job duties in a variety of climatic conditions, including high temperatures. Summer temperatures in Phoenix can reach over 110 degrees F.
  • Have a positive attitude.
  • Be able to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Be able to walk and stand for extensive periods of time, often stooping, bending, pulling, pushing, and lifting.
  • Be able to lift or carry equipment, and supplies, not to exceed 40 lbs.

 

Desired Qualifications

  • Students who are majoring in an environmental discipline (natural resources, conservation biology, plant or soil science).
  • Flexibility in working on different tasks as needs change over the course of the project.

 

Eligibility

Undergraduate student participants supported with NSF funds in either REU Supplements or REU Sites must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent residents of the United States. An undergraduate student is a student who is enrolled in a degree program (part-time or full-time) leading to a baccalaureate or associate degree.

 

How to apply

Please send cover letter, resume or CV, and unofficial transcripts to Laura Steger (e-mail: Lsteger@asu.edu) by April 13, 2018.

 

REU at the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest LTER

 

Oregon State University

 

We are seeking applicants for an NSF-funded Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) position in summer 2018 to do tree physiology research at the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest LTER on the west slope of the Oregon Cascades near Blue River, Oregon. This project will focus on characterizing the physiology of old-growth and second growth Doug-Fir trees, as well as their response to environmental conditions, using a combination of lab experiments and field observations. This research will contribute to a larger Ph.D. project on the impacts of heat waves and drought on Pacific Northwest forests, as well as facilitate research into needle endophytes. The student will be encouraged to participate in tree climbing, sample collecting, data analysis and lab experiments.

 

The position will be based at the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest and travel will be required for short trips to Oregon State University (Corvallis, Oregon). The Andrews Forest was established in 1948 as an US Forest Service Experimental Forest, and since 1980 is one of the National Science Foundation’s Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) sites. The field station has modern apartments with full kitchens, a well-equipped computer lab, and wireless internet (see http://andrewsforest.oregonstate.edu for more information on the site, facilities and research programs at the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest). The landscape is home to iconic Pacific Northwest old-growth forests of cedar and hemlock, and moss-draped ancient Douglas firs; steep terrain; and fast, cold-running streams.

 

The goal of this program is to provide undergraduate students an opportunity to participate in 10 weeks of mentored, paid, independent research. The program includes a weekly seminar series and an opportunity for the student to interact with a multitude of scientists, OSU faculty, federal scientists, and graduate students conducting research in the area. Participants will work with the PI of the project (Dr. Chris Still) and a PhD student (Adam Sibley) on the grant. The REU student will conduct supervised and guided research and be encouraged to tailor the research project to his/her own individual interests.

 

This position lasts for 10 weeks, starting in June (dates flexible) and going through mid August 2018, working at least 40 hours/week. The student will be responsible for 1) meeting all requirements of the mentors and 2) writing a final research report on his/her research experience. Housing and a weekly stipend of $550 will be provided ($5500 total). There are also some funds to defray the cost of travelling to the H. J. Andrews Experimental Forest.

 

Position Requirements: Applicants should have a valid driver’s license, the ability to carry a heavy pack (40+ lb) and be comfortable spending long days on their feet in the field. The position will involve working in inclement weather. Students with experience and/or interest in plant physiology, field measurement techniques, tree climbing, and data analysis are particularly encouraged to apply. Eligibility is limited to currently enrolled undergraduates that have a graduation date no sooner than fall 2017. All applicants must be U.S. Citizens or permanent residents. Women, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities are especially encouraged to apply.

 

To apply: Please submit a brief cover letter (1 page) indicating your interest, experience and professional goals after graduation, curriculum vitae or resume, transcripts (unofficial are acceptable) and 3 professional references (names, addresses, phone number, and email address) as 1 document to: adam.sibley@oregonstate.edu and chris.still@oregonstate.edu . Please include in the subject: HJA REU 2018 Application. Only complete applications will be considered. Review of applications will start Apr. 1, 2018 and continue until a suitable candidate is identified.

 

Summer Research Assistant Job: Conservation Biological Control and Sustainable Agriculture

 

Title: Biological Science Aide (GS2 or GS3)

Location: USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Lab, Sidney, Montana

 

Job Description/Duties: The USDA, Agriculture Research Service, Northern Plains Agriculture Research Laboratory in Sidney, MT is seeking an enthusiastic and hardworking individual to serve as a biological science aide on projects examining the influence of landscape structure and crop diversity on pest insects and their natural enemies (e.g. ladybeetles, parasitoid wasps).  The research is focused on developing ecologically-based, sustainable and environmentally friendly approaches to pest management in agricultural systems.  This position will involve a mixture of field work (~50%), and lab work to sort samples and identify insect pests and their natural enemies (~50%).  The successful candidate will gain hands on experience with insect field sampling methods, set up and maintenance of field experiments and insect rearing and identification techniques, as well as the chance to work with the diverse insect fauna associated with cropping systems in a team oriented research environment.

 

Salary: $11.68 (GS-2) or $12.74 (GS-3) per hour depending on experience and education. The candidate will receive overtime pay when working above the base work schedule of 40 hours a week.  Housing is not covered, but dorm-style shared housing is available on location for ~$148 per month, including utilities.

 

Dates: May-September 2018 (this is ~a 16-week appointment with the possibility of extension).  Please specify your available start and end dates in your application.

 

Qualifications: The candidate must be a US citizen, with a valid driver’s license.  Additionally, the candidate should be physically fit, and comfortable spending time outside in uncomfortable field conditions (hot, biting insects etc.). Willingness to work long days, and weekends when necessary is also a must. Undergraduate course work in ecology or entomology, and previous field and lab work experience is preferred but not required.

Application process: Please send cover letter, resume and names and contact information of two references (electronically) in a single file to Dr.

Tatyana Rand (tatyana.rand@ars.usda.gov).

Open Period: Evaluation of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. For more information on our research program visit our website at http://bit.ly/2Hst9xV or contact us directly.

 

USDA is an equal opportunity employer.

Reasonable Accommodation:  If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, or have questions regarding reasonable accommodation and/or accessibility for any part of the application and hiring process, please contact the Disability Program Manager on 202-720-6161 or through the DC Relay Service on 202-855-1234 (TDD).

 

We are seeking highly motivated undergraduates broadly interested in plant-insect interactions to assist with on-going research examining the basis of plant host use by yucca moth species.  The research includes recording pollination behavior, mating behavior, feeding by larvae, as well as measurement of insect morphology and plant morphology.

 

Student Experience: Students will work in a laboratory and outdoor setting.  Moths are nocturnal and active from twilight to midnight.  Students will learn how to handle moths, conduct behavioral recordings, basic experimental design, and will receive training in species interactions.  Depending on student motivation, there is the possibility to design and implement an independent project.  The student will join a group of undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty conducting research on the patterns of host use by yucca moth pollinators (althofflab.syr.edu).

 

Requirements:  Ability to stand for long periods of time, and work in changing weather conditions.  Good communication skills and ability to work in a team-setting is essential.

 

Application process:  Please submit a CV, detailing any relevant skills, unofficial transcripts, a one to two paragraph rationale for your interest in the position, and the names and contact info for two references to Dr. David Althoff at dmalthof@syr.edu.

Application evaluation will begin May 5th and will continue until the position is filled.

Please direct questions about the position to Dr. Althoff at the above e-mail.

 

Funding:  Students will be paid $12/hr for eight to ten weeks depending on the field season.

 

**Under-represented groups in STEM are strongly encouraged to apply**

 

**********************************************

UT’s Sheldon lab in collaboration with the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians Fisheries and Wildlife Management is seeking an undergraduate education coordinator for a summer research program. Please forward to qualified undergraduates:

 

We are seeking an undergraduate education coordinator to facilitate a summer research program (late May to mid-July) with high school students in the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians. The coordinator will develop and lead lessons related to climate change and the natural history of native beetles. The coordinator will also help guide students through a hands-on field research project, data analyses, and presentation of findings. Lastly, the coordinator will help organize field excursions with our collaborating wildlife biologists to provide a diversity of STEM experiences for students. The Sheldon lab and EBCI Fish and Wildlife have the expertise and know-how, so students should not be discouraged if they are new to a particular subject—like beetle natural history, for example. Housing will be provided on-site in Cherokee, NC and the coordinator will be compensated with a summer stipendHighly qualified undergraduates will have a record of excellence in STEM education through teacher-education courses and/or outreach hours with K-12 students.

 

For more information, check out —this website— which contains recruitment materials for the high school student participants. Interested undergraduates should contact Amanda Wilson Carter at acarte82@utk.eduWe would like to fill this position as soon as possible, so don’t delay!

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System and partner in the Tennessee Transfer Pathway.