We are seeking an outstanding student to pursue an MS research project exploring the habitat associations of insect pollinators on private- and public forestlands in the central Appalachian Mountains. Although many pollinators are declining throughout the eastern US, little about their habitat associations are known. To complicate matters further, even less is known about pollinator ecology in heavily forest landscapes such as central Appalachia where increased forestry efforts are underway to benefit imperiled wildlife. This research assistantship includes i) a full tuition-waver for an MS from Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP), ii) graduate stipend, and iii) all funding for required research components. The successful applicant will 1) collect pollinator occurrence data across habitats of various successional stages 2) interact frequently with private forest owners and public land managers, 3) collaborate with wildlife ecologists, statisticians, and entomologists to accomplish the above goals, and 4) work to establish scientific guidelines to aid forestry in efforts to conserve / promote forest pollinators.
Academic requirements include a BSc in wildlife, ecology, or related field, with a GPA of at least 3.3/4.0. Applicants must have prior field experience; a strong work ethic; well-rounded quantitative skills and strong desire to improve upon those skills; excellent oral/written communication skills, high attention to detail; the ability to work independently and manage a field crew; and the physical and mental capacity to work long hours and late nights in the field in hot, humid, rugged, and buggy conditions. Field work will be conducted in forest communities that are often densely-vegetated, remote, and hosting venomous snakes and black bears. A positive attitude and the personality to work/live amicably with others will be critical to project success. Preference will be given to candidates who have previously collected pollinator/entomological data and worked in young forest communities. To apply, applicants should create a single .pdf document containing: 1) a cover letter that highlights experiences and interest in conservation science, 2) resume, 3) transcripts (unofficial), and 4) the names, email addresses, and phone numbers for 3 references. Please email the single document to Dr. Jeff Larkin: email: email@example.com