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MSU Entomology



Website: Keith Mason
copyright 2014

Graduate students
Are you excited about ecology or insects and want to work on a project to help improve insect management in agriculture? If you are an enthusiastic and hard working student interested in working in the Isaacs lab for your entomology MS or Ph.D, I encourage you to contact me at isaacsr "at" msu.edu. I typically have 2-3 students in the lab, working on their independent projects and the main limitation is funding rather than potential research ideas. I take on a new student every 1-2 years, and students are encouraged to contact me early in the academic year ahead of when they might consider entering graduate school. This is partly to determine potential overlap between your research interests and future goals and my lab's future research program, and also because deadlines for funding through the NSF, EPA, USDA, and internal MSU funding sources are typically in November and December. See the People page for a list of current students, and I suggest contacting them to learn more about life in our lab, department, and university.

Undergraduate students
We hire undergraduate students and recent grads during the summer months to work with us at farms and research stations across Michigan, collecting data, sorting samples, and entering data. The ability to drive a stickshift car is a great help, but not essential. A love of the outdoors, willingness to work in a team, and an interest in insects are all positive attributes of students for these jobs. If you are interested in applying, please contact Emily May to inquire about positions related to pollinators, Keith Mason for positions related to pest management and biocontrol, or Steve Van Timmeren for positions based in west Michigan. Also be sure to check the MSU Venture website for research/employment opportunities.

For summer 2015, field/lab assistant positions are available on multiple research projects investigating the factors affecting the abundance and diversity of bees in Michigan fruit crops, as well as techniques to improve pollinator habitat in agricultural landscapes, such as perennial wildflower plantings. Work with honey bees and alternative managed bees such as bumble bees or Osmia bees is also possible. These projects will require extended stays at an MSU field research station in Fennville, MI for a 3 week period in May during fruit crop bloom (accommodations are covered).   The majority of these positions will be fieldwork (70%) but will also include greenhouse and laboratory work (30%).  Daily tasks may include: travel to field sites in university vehicle (travel time is paid), visual pollinator observations, plant surveys, pollination experiments, netting bees and other insects, data entry, measuring fruit yields, and labeling and curating bee specimens.

Required Qualifications:
Interest in conservation biology, pollination biology, entomology, or field ecology
Valid U.S. driver’s license
Ability to work outside for long periods of time in a variety of weather conditions
Attention to detail
Ability to work independently and as part of a team

Desirable skills:
Insect collection and identification
Plant identification (esp. wildflowers)
Pollen identification
Experience with Excel

Job Details:
Employment Period: May 1 2015 – August 31 2015, with some flexibility on start and end dates. Continued employment in fall/winter 2015 may be possible depending on funding and performance.
Full Time: 40 hours/week
Starting salary: $11/hr

To Apply and For Questions:
Send a resume and contact information for three references to:  Emily May (mayemil1@msu.edu) Please put ‘Bee Field Tech’ in the subject line. Review of applications begins on February 2, 2015.

Postdoctoral positions
There are currently no positions available.