MS Project: Developing, Validating, and Applying Fish Habitat Assessment Methodology for Littoral Habitat in Navigable Waterbodies (2021-2023)
I anticipate accepting a masters-level graduate student (starting field work in Summer 2021, official program entry in Fall 2021) to work on a fully-funded, collaborative project with Ohio Division of Wildlife/Department of Natural Resources developing and testing methodology for large scale habitat assessment in the Ohio River and reservoirs. This project will involve both field data collection (sidescan sonar imagery and groundtruthing habitat classifications) and spatial data analysis (GIS, image analysis, programming) to create and validate methods for assessing aquatic habitat and its relationship to important gamefish species (particularly Black Bass/ Micropterus spp. complex). Applicants should have some formal background in GIS (coursework or experience), a willingness to learn programming skills (e.g., R, Python, SQL), and be excited about a balance of field AND office work. The student will have the opportunity to work directly with fisheries professionals at ODOW.
Email a short cover letter (<1 page) that explains your interests, qualifications, and career goals (particularly describing your experience/training with GIS) and a CV/resume.
Applications will be reviewed as received, with priority to those received before Jan 15, 2021. Exact start date is flexible, but anticipated to be July 2021.
I believe that both your college and graduate degree should provide you with practical skills that will help you pursue the career of your choice, whether it be academic teaching and research, consulting, resource management, or whatever path you may choose. As such, I expect my students to be willing to pursue a multidisciplinary education and seek training and skills beyond the minimum necessary to perform their research. Although it has gone out of fashion in modern biology, I believe that understanding the natural history of your system and study species is critical to developing reasonable hypotheses and answering biologically important questions. I believe that scientific research should not exist solely in the hallowed halls of academia and strongly encourage my students to participate in public outreach and frame their research in ways that will guide responsible resource management.