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Open positions

Open Post-doc positions

Postdoctoral Researcher in Trophic Interactions and Spatial Modeling of Whiteflies in Vegetable Production Landscapes

A two-year postdoctoral position is available to work with the UGA Whitefly task-force at the University of Georgia’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Entomology. The postdoc will lead the development of spatial modeling methods to understand and predict changes in whitefly distributions, and trophic interactions in vegetable production landscapes in relation to habitat and management practices. The position will work towards a real-time whitefly/pest-natural enemy detection system. The position targets researchers interested in molecular methods to understand trophic structure of ecological communities, and researchers interested in combining remote sensing with novel spatial modeling and network analysis of trophic interactions to forecast the shape of communities and determine management options with least impact on biodiversity.

The postdoctoral researcher will work with Dr. Jason Schmidt (molecular trophic interactions), Dr. Phillip Staniczenko (network analysis) and UGA FVSU Whitefly team (linked to applied agriculture), and join a network of collaborators throughout the region. The successful candidate will lead the research project, coordinate collaborations, and publish results. University of Georgia Tifton Campus is located in Tifton, GA, and is home to approximately 90 PhD scientists working on agricultural and forestry related research questions.

A completed Ph.D. in ecology, biogeography, statistics or a related field. The ideal candidate will have demonstrated expertise in statistical modeling and spatial analysis, and potentially have expertise in a programming language for bioinformatics (i.e. Python), use of R and statistical tools for biodiversity analyses. We also value a record of research productivity and search for a self-motivated, independent scientist who communicates well and thrives in a multidisciplinary multinational collaborative environments.

Additional information:
12-month fixed-term contract (extendable 1 year); competitive salary and benefits package.
Send a cover letter explaining your curriculum and your areas of expertise including a description of the candidate’s past experience and projects in line with the proposed position, a CV, e-mail address of 2-3 referees to Dr. Jason Schmidt (jschmid2@uga.edu), and could begin as soon as September 1, 2019 and will hopefully be filled by December 2019.
For questions, contact Jason Schmidt via email (jschmid2@uga.edu).

Open Graduate Student Positions

Research assistantship position – Building sustainable insect management programs in Georgia tree Fruit

A research assistantship for a PhD and/or an MS student is available in the Department of Entomology at University of Georgia beginning in spring or summer 2020. Research will focus on a biological control in peach agroecosystems and work to improve biocontrol service delivery in this system. Questions will include studying the roles of habitat and insecticide use on biocontrol of scales and plum curculio. The project will involve lab rearing, field studies and genetic analysis of predators for recent feeding on scale and plum curculio pests (molecular gut content analysis).

Please forward a CV, cover letter, unofficial transcripts/GRE scores, contact information for three references and a sample of scientific writing (e.g. thesis, published or in preparation manuscripts) to Dr. Brett Blaauw (bblaauw@uga.edu) and/or Dr. Jason Schmidt (jschmid2@uga.edu) by November 10. The position comes with a generous stipend, tuition waiver and health benefits. Successful applicant will have the opportunity to gain research, teaching and extension experience.

Research assistantship position – Cover crops for sustainable pest management and biodiversity provisioning in cotton agroecosystems

A research assistantship for a MS student is available in the Department of Entomology at University of Georgia beginning in spring or summer 2020. Research will focus on a cover cropping and biodiversity in cotton agroecosystems. Questions will include studying the roles of cover crops in reducing water use, pesticide use and biocontrol service delivery. The project will involve field studies, re-calibration of scouting methods for cover crop systems, and potentially genetic analysis of predators for recent feeding on cotton pests, with focus on whiteflies and stinkbugs (molecular gut content analysis).

Please forward a CV, cover letter, unofficial transcripts/GRE scores, contact information for three references and a sample of scientific writing (e.g. thesis, published or in preparation manuscripts) to Dr. Jason Schmidt (jschmid2@uga.edu) by November 10. The position comes with a generous stipend, tuition waiver and health benefits. Successful applicant will have the opportunity to gain research, teaching and extension experience.

Preferred: For PhD applicants, should possess an M.S. in entomology, ecology, evolution or related field and have valid driver’s license. The preferred applicants will possess a strong research background as an undergraduate or as a technician. The ideal candidates will have a balance of analytical skills, experience working with insects and interest in understanding ecological communities, and pest management.