We invite applicants for an M.S. graduate research assistantship in the Biology Department at the State University of New York College at Oneonta to begin spring semester of 2018.
The overarching goal of this project is to assess sensitivity of American shad population responses to climate change, fishery harvest, dam-passage performance standards, and life-history uncertainty using recently developed decision-support tools. The student researcher will be responsible for integrating climate change and fishery harvest scenarios into existing models for the Connecticut and Penobscot rivers, and will develop models for use in the Merrimack and Susquehanna Rivers. Specifically, research responsibilities will include 1) collecting and compiling life-history data from collaborators throughout the geographic range of interest, 2) collaborating with partners to hind-cast temperatures and create regional climate projections, 3) relating historical climate data to American shad growth and mortality in an effort to predict future changes, and 4) integrating these results into American shad dam passage performance standards models to support development of fish passage standards at dams.
This work is funded primarily by NOAA, and will include extensive collaboration with state and federal agencies throughout the Northeast United States. Some travel is required, and may include site visits and meetings in locales from Pennsylvania to Maine.
Applicants should have earned a bachelor’s degree in biology/ecology, biostatistics, computer programming, or related fields with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Excellent written and oral communication skills are required.
Programming experience in R, C++, and/or Python is strongly preferred. Because current tools are written in a combination of these languages, interest in learning these skills quickly is essential. Additionally, the candidate must be able to work with minimal guidance in a multi-stakeholder environment, including state and federal agencies, private sector, first nations, and collaborators from a variety of disciplines at other academic institutions.
Interested applicants should send a cover letter outlining research interests and career goals, CV or resume, unofficial transcripts, and contact information for at least two references. Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Women and under-represented minorities are encouraged to apply.