Student Research Assistants – Forest Carbon and Climate Program

Hiring Organization: Forest Carbon and Climate Program, Department of Forestry
Employment type: Part-Time
Application Deadline: October 31, 2021

Position description

Looking for an exciting academic work experience addressing climate change?  The Forest Carbon and Climate Program (FCCP) in the Department of Forestry is looking to hire  Student Research Assistants for the Fall 2021 and Spring 2022 semesters.   Multiple positions are available.  The selected candidates will provide research and synthesis support for MSU’s Forest Carbon and Climate Program FCCP under the umbrella of forests, carbon and climate.  Topics may include forest and climate policy developments (local, state, federal and international), current events, life cycle analyses, harvested wood products, forest management practices, forest inventorying, urban forestry, forest carbon projects and carbon markets, and payment for ecosystem services (PES) schemes.  There are ample opportunities to link student interests to specific topics within the informational needs of the FCCP; a wide range of students are encouraged to apply.  

Characteristic Duties/Responsibilities

  • Work and outputs desired will vary from week to week and may include summaries of academic findings, contributions to publications and knowledge transfer materials, creating and updating tables detailing policy developments, tracking and synthesizing ongoing policy discussions and current events, and note-taking and synthesis of high-level workshops.
  • Students will be linked with one FCCP core member who will serve as the candidate’s primary supervisor and mentor.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Must be a graduate or undergraduate student at Michigan State University, enrolled in the Fall 2021 and Spring 2022 semesters (pay and responsibilities commensurate with experience)
  • Interest in forestry or natural resources, environmental economics, and/or climate policy
  • Strong writing skills (including the ability to write succinctly with fast turnaround)
  • Comfort with data interpretation and synthesizing various resources
  • Ability to thrive in a fast-paced environment – candidate will ideally enjoy taking on new (and occasionally unfamiliar) research projects
  • Preferred background in forestry, natural resources, journalism, political science, economics, community sustainability or other relevant discipline

Working Conditions

This position is office-based (with work-from-home opportunities) and requires the student to have access to a computer and Internet.  The job will include regular meetings with supervisor.

Compensation and Dates

Compensation commensurate with experience.  Expecting 10-15 hours per week. 

To Apply

Submit 1) a letter of interest detailing qualifications for the position and the dates/times of availability, 2) resume/CV with list of relevant coursework and experiences, and 3) short writing sample (~2 pages; feel free to use an example from a recent class assignment).  Email: with “FCCP student position” in the title. Applicants may also apply through Handshake by searching for position #5390116.


Applications will be considered until October 31, 2021, or until the position has been filled.  Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible.


The College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) at Michigan State University (MSU) is committed to achieving excellence by creating and sustaining an accessible and inclusive culture that values cultural and academic diversity. MSU is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. The CANR is particularly interested in candidates of all backgrounds who are committed to the principle that academic excellence is achieved through open access and proactive inclusion.