REU Chemical ecology of yuccas

We are seeking a highly motivated undergraduate student who is broadly

interested in plant-insect interactions and chemical ecology.  The REU

student will learn how to isolate and analyze plant defensive compounds and

characterize variation in plant defensive chemistry among Yucca species.

This will be a stand-alone project spearheaded by the student that

complements on-going research on this well-known system.  The student will

be based at Syracuse University, in Syracuse, NY with occasional travel to

Cornell University, Ithaca, NY to interact with the Cornell Chemical Ecology



Student Experience:  The REU student will work in a laboratory and outdoor

setting,and learn how to identify yucca species, characterize plant

morphology, extract lignin and saponins, and use ODS column separation

techniques.  In addition, the student will have the opportunity to learn how

to analyze data from LC-MS.  The student will join a group of

undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty conducting research on the

patterns of host use by yucca moth pollinators (

Requirements:  Knowledge of standard laboratory practices including making

solutions, working with acids and bases, and excellent pipetting skills.

Familiarity with handling insects is a plus.  Applicant must be enrolled as

an undergraduate student at a college or university.

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 of two references sent electronically to Dr.

David Althoff, Application evaluation will begin

immediately and continue until the position is filled.  Please direct

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

Funding:  Students will receive a $4000 stipend for the eight weeks with a

research budget of $2000 for supplies and equipment fees.