Mycorrhizal role in nutrient cycling & ecosystem function (PAID CAFE Summer Scholar Project with possibility to extend to the future)

Mycorrhizal fungi form a symbiotic relationship with most terrestrial plants. Our lab seeks to understand how mycorrhizal associations influence nutrient cycling, soil organic matter dynamics, plant productivity and stress tolerance, and ecosystem response to change. We are seeking a new team member to help us investigate these complex associations through a wide variety of approaches (eg, manipulative greenhouse experiments, soil incubations, field work, molecular biology, genomics, analytical chemistry, stable isotope tracing, imaging, etc). This position will begin as a CAFE Summer Scholar position for Summer 2024, with the possibility to extend to the future. To apply, please send a copy of your resume and a brief (~2 paragraph) description of your experience and interest in the project to rhestrin@umass.edu.

Name of research group, project, or lab
Hestrin Lab
Why participate in this opportunity?

This is an opportunity to conduct research in a supportive, team-oriented environment. Students will develop skills that are broadly applicable to other scientific fields and careers. Students who can stay beyond one semester will have the opportunity to design and conduct independent research projects in soil biogeochemistry and plant-microbe interactions.

Logistics Information:
Subject Category
Ecology
Microbiology
Plant Biology
Student ranks applicable
Freshman
Sophomore
Junior
Student qualifications

We are looking for a student who is curious, motivated, organized, detail-oriented, and able to work both independently and as part of a team. Some coursework in chemistry, plant or microbial biology, and/or Earth sciences, as well as some experience with laboratory, greenhouse, or field work is required. Ability to sit and stand for long periods of time, work outside or in the greenhouse under adverse conditions, and conduct repetitive manual tasks (eg, pipetting) is required. Priority will be given to students who can commit to more than one semester.

Time commitment
15+ h/wk
Position Types and Compensation
Research - Paid, General
Number of openings
1
Techniques learned

Work may include design and maintenance of greenhouse experiments and soil incubations, field sampling, molecular biology (e.g., DNA extractions and quantification, PCR, etc), microbial culturing, chemical and spectroscopic measurements, microscopy, and data analysis.

Contact Information:
Mentor
Rachel Hestrin
rhestrin@umass.edu
Principal Investigator
Name of project director or principal investigator
Rachel Hestrin
Email address of project director or principal investigator
rhestrin@umass.edu
1 sp. | 18 appl.
Hours
15+ h/wk
Project categories
Ecology (+2)
EcologyMicrobiologyPlant Biology