Ph.D. Assistantship: Oak Regeneration in Upland Hardwood Forests at Mississippi State University

Hiring Organization: Mississippi State University
Employment type: Full-Time
Job Location: Starkville, MS
Application Deadline: March 31, 2022

Description:

The Department of Forestry in the College of Forest Resources at Mississippi State University is seeking applicants for a funded Ph.D. research assistantship. The successful candidate will be advised by Drs. Austin Himes and Joshua Granger in the Department of Forestry and conduct research on oak regeneration in upland hardwood forests of northern Mississippi.

The student will conduct 3-4 controlled and replicated experiments testing specific hypotheses related to concerns about declining oak regeneration and changes in forest composition and structure in these systems. The experiments will also act as demonstrations for teaching and area outreach. The student is expected to take on an ongoing study testing the interactions of fire and an invasive annual grass on oak seeding survival and growth compared to other tree species along a fire tolerance/shade tolerance gradient. The student will initiate a new study focused on the combined effects of leaf litter composition and seed predation on germination of oaks and competitor tree species. The student will also develop 1-2 additional studies based on their interests.

The successful candidate will be expected to work independently in the field to establish experiments, collect data and samples, process samples in the laboratory as needed, analyze data and communicate results through multiple peer-reviewed journal articles, presentations at national and international scientific conferences and reports to project partners. The position starts Fall semester, 2022. This is a 3-year position that includes an annual stipend of $20,000, tuition waiver and insurance.

Required qualifications:

  • Ability to meet all admission requirements of the Department of Forestry Graduate Program
  • Valid driver’s license or ability to get one
  • Masters degree in forestry, natural resources, environmental science or related field (exceptional students with B.S. may be considered)
  • Demonstrated excellence in English (written and oral) communication
  • Willingness to drive long distances for field work with multiple consecutive overnight stays
  • Ability to walk long distances encumbered with 30+ pounds of gear and conduct field research in challenging conditions

Interested candidates should email Drs. Austin Himes (austin.himes@msstate.edu) and Joshua Granger (joshua.j.granger@msstate.edu) a cover letter explaining your interest and qualifications for the position, a resume/CV, unofficial transcripts, and contact information for 3 references. If you have taken the GRE general test, please provide your unofficial results with your resume/CV.

Preferred qualifications:

  • Experience or willingness to learn R-statistical software
  • Experience writing peer-reviewed journal publications
  • Experience with experimental design and quantitative analysis
  • Experience or understanding of forest ecology and/or silviculture

Successful applicants will be required to apply to the Graduate School at Mississippi State University. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. The application deadline for 2022 fall enrollment is August 1 (domestic) and May 1 (international).

Successful applicants will be required to apply to the Graduate School at Mississippi State University. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. The application deadline for 2022 fall enrollment is August 1 (domestic) and May 1 (international).

MSU is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, ethnicity, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, disability status, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. We always welcome nominations and applications from women, members of any minority group, and others who share our passion for building a diverse community that reflects the diversity in our student population.

In compliance with the ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA), if you have a disability and would like to request an accommodation in order to apply for a position with Mississippi State University, please contact the Department of Human Resources Management at telephone: (662) 325-3713 or ada@hrm.msstate.edu.

If you have any questions regarding this policy, contact the Department of Human Resources Management at (662) 325-3713 or ada@hrm.msstate.edu. Upon request, sections of this job listing are available in large print, and readers are available to assist the visually impaired

Contact Information:

Austin Himes, Ph.D.                                                                                        Joshua Granger, Ph.D.

Department of Forestry                                                                                Department of Forestry

Mississippi State University                                                                         Mississippi State University

Box 9681                                                                                                              Box 9681

Mississippi State, MS 39762                                                                          Mississippi State, MS 39762

Office: 353 Thompson Hall                                                                           Office: 321 Thompson Hall

E-mail: austin.himes@msstate.edu                                                          E-mail: joshua.j.granger@msstate.edu

Phone: (662) 325-4249                                                                                   Phone: (662) 325-0596