Graduate Position Picture

The Freshwater Mussel Group at Texas A&M University has three graduate positions (two MS and one PhD) open under the supervision of Dr. Charles Randklev and Dr. Roel Lopez. Please see below for position descriptions and qualifications.

Agency: the Texas A&M Natural Resource Institute and Department of Rangeland, Wildlife and Fisheries Management
Location: Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Dallas.
Salary: PHD – $35,000/ MS – $32,000
Start Date: Summer/Fall 2022 (flexible)
Last Date to Apply: 03/30/2022
Website: https://rwfm.tamu.edu/graduate-programs/

Description
We are looking for highly motivated, hardworking students who have a passion for the conservation of freshwater ecosystems to join the NRI Mussel Lab. We have one PhD graduate assistantship and two MS graduate assistantships available under the supervision of Dr. Charles Randklev and Dr. Roel Lopez in the Texas A&M Natural Resource Institute and Department of Rangeland, Wildlife and Fisheries Management. The PhD assistantship will focus on using species distribution models to predict the occurrence of rare and common mussel species and/or evaluating mussel-flow ecology relationships, with the goal of informing conservation status assessments. For the MS assistantships, one will focus on better understanding population dynamics of threatened mussel species through a combination of mark-recapture studies and shell thin-sectioning, and the other will focus on testing lethal and sublethal temperature assays to inform environmental flow efforts.

More information about the graduate program in the Department of Rangeland, Wildlife and Fisheries Management – https://rwfm.tamu.edu/graduate-programs/
More information about the mussel research program at NRI-TAMU: https://dallas.tamu.edu/research/mussels/

Lab Website: https://tamumussels.com

Funding: support for these projects come from state and federal natural resource agencies.

For the PhD assistantship a full stipend (grant funded Research Assistantship) for 4 years will be provided: ~$35,000/yr (tuition + salary; ~$9,000 per year + $26,000).

For the MS assistantships a full stipend (grant funded Research Assistantship) for 2 years will be provided: ~$32,000/yr (~$9,000 + $23,000).

Additional scholarship and funding opportunities may be available.

Qualifications
Required: For PhD assistantship – MS in Biology or related field; previous research experience in environmental modeling and statistics; GPA >3.5; GRE scores >70th percentile (156 verbal and 159 quantitative). PADI, or equivalent, SCUBA certification. For MS assistantship – BS in Biology or related field; previous research experience in aquatic ecology, community ecology, or ecotoxicology; GPA >3.0; GRE scores > 60th percentile (153 verbal and 156 quantitative).
All applicants should have strong analytical, oral, and written communication skills, plus detail oriented and can work independently; valid driver’s license and insurance are required; must be comfortable in the water and outdoors in both the heat and cold.

Preferred: For PhD assistantship – publications using species distribution models, strong statistical background, and ability to code; For MS assistantship – research experience with freshwater mussels (unionids); publications in ecotoxicology, stream ecology, or community ecology; PADI, or equivalent, SCUBA certification.

Before applying, please email a single PDF document to BOTH Dr. Randklev (crandklev@ag.tamu.edu) AND Dr. Lopez (roel.lopez@ag.tamu.edu) that contains: (1) a letter of interest describing your qualifications, experience and background, and which position you are applying to (2) your CV, (3) GRE scores, (4) GPA and unofficial transcripts, and (5) contact information for 3 academic/research references. Feel free to contact us for more information about the graduate program, our research, and specifics about the project.

Contact Person: Dr. Charles Randklev and Dr. Roel Lopez

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