Grad student opportunities in coastal ecology at University of Virginia

The Castorani Lab at the University of Virginia is recruiting 1=E2=80=932 g=
students (MS or PhD) to study the population and community ecology of
coastal marine ecosystems. Students will be advised by Max Castorani ( and join UVA’s highly interdisciplinary
Department of Environmental Sciences (
Potential systems for field studies include coastal lagoons, salt marshes,
and seagrass meadows in Virginia, kelp forests in southern California, and
estuaries in northern California. Students will have the opportunity to
contribute to highly collaborative long-term ecological research in the
Virginia Coast Reserve LTER ( and Santa
Barbara Coastal LTER (

Applicants should have strong interests in population dynamics, spatial
ecology (dispersal, landscape ecology, metapopulations), or community
ecology (biodiversity, species interactions, foundation species, invasive
species), especially in the context of ecological disturbances. Ideal
applicants will also have some or all of the following qualifications (or a
strong desire to learn these skills): (1) Experience in experimental field
ecology, ideally in coastal ecosystems; (2) Experience with data management
or analysis, ideally in the R programming language; (3) Interest in the
ecology of marine plants, algae, invertebrates, or fishes; (4) Experience
with the collection or analysis of remotely-sensed imagery using unmanned
aerial vehicles (drones) or satellites. Although research in the Castorani
Lab is primarily motivated by fundamental ecological questions, there are
opportunities for applied research related to coastal habitat restoration
(eelgrass) and aquaculture (oysters and clams).

Field resources include access to boating, laboratory, and mesocosm
facilities at the Anheuser-Busch Coastal Research Center ( located at the Virginia Coast Reserve, a
highly dynamic coastal barrier landscape comprising tidal marshes, coastal
bays, and barrier islands. There are also opportunities for scuba-based
research in kelp forests located near Santa Barbara, California, as well as
field work at Point Reyes National Seashore near San Francisco.

UVA has a strong interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Environmental
Sciences (, offering
training and conducting research in ecology, geosciences, hydrology, and
atmospheric sciences. Graduate students accepted into the program are
typically supported through a mixture of teaching assistantships and
research assistantships that support full stipend, tuition, and health

Those interested should send (1) a CV with academic and professional
experience (including GPA); (2) a brief description of their background,
career goals, motivations for pursuing a graduate degree, research ideas,
and why they are specifically interested in joining the Castorani Lab; and
(3) contact information for 2=E2=80=933 references to Max Castorani ( The application deadline is January 15, 2018 for
enrollment in Fall 2018, however applicants should send an email expressing
their interest as soon as possible.