M.S. Graduate Assistantship – Shorebird Ecology – Mississippi State University

Mississippi State University
Starkville, MS
Job Category
Graduate Assistantships
Start Date
Last Date to Apply
We are seeking a motivated M.S. student to join our research teams in the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries & Aquaculture at Mississippi State University. The student will census sample wetland bird species (shorebird emphasis) in restored and reference impoundments in Mississippi during critical use periods (fall and spring migration, winter). Fall migration surveying will span late-July through October. Winter and spring migration surveying will occur from January (i.e., in accordance with waterfowl hunting seasons and permissible land access) through mid-May beginning as soon as 2022. Sampling will occur on a subset of state, federal, and private wetlands and associated habitats among multiple stakeholders including, but not limited to, Ducks Unlimited, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality. The candidate will be expected to interact with stakeholders and associated personnel. We anticipate bird surveys to be conducted weekly among sites. Anticipated tenure of the student would be summer 2021 (negotiable) lasting at least 2.5 years, through thesis completion. Pending additional funding, other techniques (e.g., radio telemetry) may be implemented. The project and student will be co-advised by Drs. Brian Davis and Ray Iglay.
B.S. degree in wildlife science, ecology, biology, or related natural resources field; undergraduate GPA >3.0; GRE scores not required but factored into decision making. Applicant should have an excellent academic record, prior field experience with wetland birds, and writing and data management skills. Evidence of motivation for fieldwork despite extreme conditions is always appreciated in addition to accurate data collection and excellent writing. Stipend is approximately $17,000 per year. The student will also receive health insurance and tuition will be covered. Activity fees are less than $300 annually. Candidates must have a valid driver’s license and a sound driving record. To apply, please email us the following as a single document: (1) a cover letter (< 1 page) of your professional interests and career aspirations, (2) CV or resume, (3) copies of all college transcripts, and (4) names, phone numbers, and email addresses of at least three references. We will select a candidate based on academic merit, professional aspirations, and interest in waterbird and wetland ecology and management. Hence, please tell us about you in your cover letter and CV. Other beneficial attributes of the person could include shore- and other wetland bird identification skills, ability to work independently and in a team, and motivation to synthesize data and publish their findings. We will review applicant packages upon receipt and continue until we find the candidate. Please apply early! Preferred start date is August 1, 2021, but the date is negotiable. Mississippi State University is one of the leading research institutions in the Southeast and ranked as a top-tier land grant university by the National Science Foundation. The Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture is comprised of 35 faculty, >20 support staff, and > 60 graduate students. It is home to the Mississippi USGS Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, a US Fish and Wildlife Service Unit, USDA Wildlife Services State Director’s office, and several MDWFP offices. MSU is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, ethnicity, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, disability status, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. We always welcome nominations and applications from women, members of any minority group, and others who share our passion for building a diverse community that reflects the diversity in our student population.
Contact Person
Ray Iglay
Contact Phone
(662) 325-5933
Contact eMail
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