Subject: Graduate student positions in plant-microbe interactions
The Schaeffer Lab in the Department of Biology at Utah State University (USU) is looking for MS/PhD students starting Fall 2019. Potential to start earlier however may be possible for the right candidate.
The lab uses experiments and field studies, coupled with chemical, molecular, and bioinformatic techniques, to examine the ecology and evolution of cross-kingdom interactions between plants, insects, and microbes in both natural and human-modified ecosystems. Many research topics can be pursued, including but not limited to, the chemical and evolutionary ecology of plant-pollinator-microbe interactions, microbial-assisted biocontrol of plant disease and invasives, among others. Students are welcome to work on systems in which research is already being pursued in the lab; however, I strongly encourage development of independent lines of research, as well as pursuit of external funding to support those efforts.
The Department of Biology and USU offer excellent opportunities for education, training, funding, and collaboration. All graduate students in the department are provided with a competitive stipend and benefits for up to 3 (MS students) or 6 (PhD students) years through a combination of fellowships, teaching assistantships, and research assistantships. Moreover, abundant opportunities for collaboration exist, given the vibrant research community that spans across the Biology department, Ecology Center, and two USDA-ARS labs focused on pollinating insects and poisonous plants respectively. Finally, being centered in the Cache Valley of northern Utah, Logan offers abundant
recreation opportunities, given close proximity to the Wasatch Range, as well as National parks.
Prospective students should email me (email@example.com) with a note expressing research interests, as well as a description of your past research experience. Please include your C.V. and contact information for three references. Ideal applicants will have: background in plant or microbial ecology, or related subject; strong written and oral communication skills, strong quantitative and/or bioinformatic skills; ability to work independently or part of a collaborative team.
Please visit the lab webpage for more information:
Robert Schaeffer, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor (starting Jan 2019)
Department of Biology
Utah State University