NSF NRT Funded Master’s and PhD Positions in Resilience and Sustainability of Agro-Ecosystems

The National Research Traineeship (NRT) funded by the National Science Foundation at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is seeking master’s and Ph.D. students for interdisciplinary training and study focused on understanding the resilience of agro-ecosystems, particularly the Platte River Basin. The basin, which originates in Wyoming and Colorado and drains through Nebraska, is one of the world’s most productive and efficient agricultural systems, not only supporting agriculture but also meeting the needs of industry and wildlife and for recreation and drinking water. Around the world, such competing demands on water resources, and external threats such as climate change and competition for land, make it increasingly critical to have the best and clearest scientific information to resolve complex food, energy, water, and ecosystem services problems. UNL’s NRT is training the next generation of natural and social scientists, computer and biological systems engineers, managers, and policymakers by increasing understanding and designing infrastructure that leads to a knowledge of how resilience is generated in complex systems of people and nature. The NRT provides cross-disciplinary academic and experiential training for a diverse group of graduate students in natural, social, and computational sciences. Students will receive their graduate degree from their home departments—such as the School of Natural Resources, the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, the Biological Systems Engineering Department, the Department of Agronomy and Horticulture, or the Department of Political Science—and meet in the NRT laboratory for special trainings and interdisciplinary collaboration.

Students will participate in externships and workshops, engaging with partners from the agricultural industry, state and federal government, and private organizations interested in maintaining the resilience of healthy agro-ecosystems. Students will use resilience and panarchy theory, adaptive management, data science, novel sensing technologies and modeling, and policy interventions. They will help develop innovative tools for collecting, synthesizing, and analyzing data needed to make management and policy decisions. Students will collaborate with other NRTs and the Delft Institute for Water Education, traveling to the Netherlands to compare the agro-ecosystem of the Platte River Basin to those in Western Europe. They will have written a research paper or produced a product by the culmination of their program.

Annual stipends are $34,000 for master’s students (two-year maximum) and $36,000 for Ph.D. students (three-year maximum), along with health insurance and remission of tuition and selected university fees. Indigenous People and domestic students from other minority groups underrepresented in the sciences are especially encouraged to apply. International students are not eligible for this traineeship.

To apply, please email the following to Ronica Stromberg, Program Coordinator, at rstromberg3@unl.edu:

• Curriculum vitae

• Statement or letter of interest

• GRE or GMAT scores

• Academic transcripts

• UNL department in which you would plan to use the graduate school tuition benefit

For more information, email Ms. Stromberg or see https://nam01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fnrt.unl.edu&data=02%7C01%7Ceric.schultz%40uconn.edu%7Cd3a7e81b68d54ebb29dd08d6aea7e6e9%7C17f1a87e2a254eaab9df9d439034b080%7C0%7C0%7C636888433521388249&sdata=VbyYWCQcPrN2fI22%2FcfkRFQRFVSoxUrG2tqGzB1LcaI%3D&reserved=0.

Deadline for applications: March 29, 2019

Start date: August 1, 2019