1-2 graduate student (M.S. or Ph.D. level) (Water quality)

University of Kansas

Lawrence, KS, USA 🇺🇸

M.S. or Ph.D. position #1: Climate and agricultural impacts on water quality

We are recruiting a graduate student (M.S. or Ph.D. track) to begin in summer/fall 2022 as part of a new project studying the intersection of water quality/quantity, agriculture, and community resilience to climate change. The student will join an interdisciplinary team of scientists focused on understanding how climate change and different agricultural adaptation strategies will impact water quantity/quality in the eastern Great Plains, and how adaptations can help manage novel climate risks.

The student will live and work in the Kansas River basin and be based at Kansas Geological Survey/University of Kansas working with Erin Seybold and Sam Zipper. This student will lead statistical modeling efforts to determine the climatic and agricultural drivers of nutrient loads under current and future climate/management scenarios, and will provide support for field-based water quality monitoring networks. This student will collaborate closely with other scientists (Vaishali ShardaKate Nelson at Kansas State), students, postdocs and interact with stakeholders and water managers throughout the region, thus preparing the student for a variety of different career paths in academia, government, and/or industry.  

Required qualifications: (i) Bachelor’s degree in water-related discipline, (ii) Experience with coding in R, Python, and/or statistical modeling approaches, (iii) Proficiency in oral and written communication in English.

Preferred qualifications: (i) Master’s degree in a water-related disciplines, (ii) Geospatial analysis skills, (iii) Previous experience or interest in field work, (iv) Demonstrated ability to work effectively in an interdisciplinary team.

M.S. position #2: Streamwater quality resilience in the Kansas River

In collaboration with the recently funded NSF Critical Zone Network Big Data Cluster, we are recruiting one M.S. student to join our group at the University of Kansas (KU) to study patterns and drivers of water quality resilience in the Kansas River. Using a combination of long-term data and high-frequency sensor networks, this project will use event-scale streamwater chemistry data to explore the effects of critical zone structure and climate on nutrient export, and explore thresholds in resilience in response to disturbances (e.g. hydrologic forcings, land use change). This student will join a collaborative, interdisciplinary team of scientists from 8 institutions across the US who are using Big Data tools to understand how the critical zone shapes resistance and resilience to environmental change.

Required qualifications:  (i) Bachelor’s degree in water-related discipline, (ii) Proficiency in oral and written communication in English.

Preferred qualifications: (i) Previous experience or interest in field work, (ii) Experience with coding in R, Python, etc., (iii) Geospatial analysis skills, (iv) Demonstrated ability to work effectively in an interdisciplinary team.

General information:

Grad students for both positions will be admitted through the Department of Geology at KU, and will be based at the Kansas Geological Survey, a research and service center at the University of Kansas. This position is fully funded for two years and includes summer support. Research in the Seybold lab is inherently interdisciplinary and we welcome students with backgrounds across the natural sciences (biology, geology, earth and environment science, etc.). The candidate should be highly self-motivated and have a strong interest in being part of a collaborative research team. Our lab is committed to increasing representation of women and minorities in science and encourages candidates from diverse backgrounds to apply.

To inquire about these positions, please contact Dr. Erin Seybold at [email protected] with the following items as a single PDF attachment: 1) A cover letter describing your interest in the position, and how you meet the required and preferred qualifications, 2) Resume/CV, 3) Contact information for two professional references, and 4) unofficial transcripts. Review of applications will begin on November 1, 2021 and will continue until the position is filled.

For more information on the lab’s research activities, check out our Research page.