Graduate (MS) Position in Field-based Plant Ecology-West Virginia

Marshall University
Huntington, WV
Job Category
Graduate Assistantships
Funding will consist of a combination of research and teaching assistantships for two years. A 12-month competitive stipend ($17,000), full tuition waiver, and health insurance will be provided.
Start Date
Last Date to Apply
The Palmquist Lab at Marshall University is recruiting for a funded MS position at Marshall University in field-based plant ecology. Our research focuses on quantifying vegetation dynamics over space and time and identifying how the relative importance of ecological processes structuring plant communities changes with spatial and temporal scale. In addition, a key goal of our research is to understand how pattern and process in plant communities will be altered in the face of global environmental change. An important motivation for our work is to address ecological questions at large spatial scales to inform landscape conservation. We collect field data, use existing large observational data sets, and implement simulation modeling to address these goals in temperate shrublands, woodlands, and forests. Additional information about the lab can be found at RESEARCH FOCUS: The successful candidate will broadly explore the influence of disturbance, potentially including hurricanes, climate-change induced drought, or fire, on plant biodiversity and composition in woodlands and forests throughout the southeastern US. These ecosystems are among the most biodiverse systems in North America. I encourage students to identify their own research questions and topics of particular interest within this broad umbrella and I will work closely with them to design an interesting and fulfilling research project. I anticipate this project will leverage a large network of permanent plots throughout the southeast, along with fieldwork, to understand how disturbance shapes plant communities over space and time. EXPECTATIONS: The successful candidate will be expected to conduct high-quality research, serve as a teaching assistant within the Department of Biological Sciences, present their research to the scientific community at regional and national meetings, and publish in peer-reviewed scientific journals. TIMELINE: The position is available starting January 2019. Ideally, students would join us at the start of the spring 2019 semester or at the latest by the start of the summer field season (June 2019), to begin field data collection before starting classes in August. Marshall University is in a fantastic, affordable college town, located on the Ohio River in the beautiful state of West Virginia. The town is small enough to get around on foot and bike, but large enough to support a variety of restaurants and other cultural activities. Huntington and the surrounding area offer ample recreational opportunities (hiking, skiing, rafting), along with proximity to larger cities, including Louisville, KY, Cincinnati, OH, and Columbus, OH. The Department of Biological Sciences contains expertise in a variety of biological fields, including but not limited to ecology, evolution, herpetology, and physiology. In the Palmquist Lab, we highly value and encourage work-life balance.
PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS: A background, including relevant course work, in ecology and botany, an interest in studying the flora and ecosystems of the southeastern US, strong communication and written skills, and quantitative skills or an interest in learning them. HOW TO APPLY: Interested students should apply by submitting the following to Dr. Kyle Palmquist ( 1) Short statement of research interests and career goals (no longer than 1 page), 2) CV or resume, 3) Unofficial transcripts, 4) GRE scores, and 5) Contact information for three professional references. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until a candidate is selected. I will contact you to discuss your research interests and goals for graduate school to determine if you would be a good fit for the lab. If selected, a full application must be submitted to the Department of Biological Sciences at Marshall University, Huntington, WV. More information about the Department and its programs can be found here: Application requirements for admission to the DBS graduate program can be found here: I strongly encourage students from diverse backgrounds and experiences to apply. Feel free to contact me with questions at any time!
Contact Person
Dr. Kyle Palmquist
Contact eMail
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