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Washington State University: MS or PhD positions in Animal Physiology

(posted 2017-10-01)

M.S. or Ph.D. positions in environmental animal physiology. The Dowd laboratory in the School of Biological Sciences (SBS) at Washington State University (WSU) seeks curious, creative, and motivated candidates for graduate student positions. We are broadly interested in the interactions between environmental variation and physiological variation. Current marine animal models include rocky intertidal zone mussels (in the genus Mytilus) and tidepool copepods (Tigriopus californicus, currently funded by NSF IOS), focusing on spatial and temporal environmental variation and its relationship to inter-individual and inter-species differences in physiological phenomena such as thermal tolerance, antioxidant capacity, and measures of performance (growth/fecundity). We couple measurements at the organismal level with assessment of the underlying biochemical processes that are influenced by these patterns of variation. Depending on student interests, other model systems (including aquatic vertebrates) may be appropriate. More information about our past and current work can be found at The School of Biological Sciences has a strong research presence in organismal biology, evolution, and ecology ( There are many opportunities for interaction and collaboration across WSU and at the University of Idaho (just across the border in Moscow), including the possibility of co-mentorship by other SBS faculty.

The student will be based at the WSU campus in Pullman, WA, but fieldwork is often an integral part of our approach. Through collaborations, the student may work in the field at Hopkins Marine Station of Stanford University in Pacific Grove, CA, and there are numerous potential field sites along the Washington and Oregon coasts. The Pullman-Moscow community enjoys all of the benefits of having two land-grant universities in a safe and friendly, small-town setting. The surrounding area offers a variety of outdoor activities with mountains, wilderness, and tributaries of the Snake/Clearwater Rivers. Spokane is roughly 1.5 hours to the north.

Funding will most likely consist of a mixture of Teaching Assistantships (guaranteed for 5 years for Ph.D. students) and Research Assistantships, both of which include tuition waivers and health insurance. There are internal WSU fellowships available, particularly for groups under-represented in STEM; all students will be encouraged to apply for external funding as part of their training.

The deadline for applications to the School of Biological Sciences is January 10 for a position in the Fall 2018 graduate class. Well in advance of applying, interested students should send the following via email to Wes Dowd as a SINGLE PDF document: 1) one-page cover letter including a brief statement of research experiences, research interests, and career goals, briefly explaining how they align with the focus of the lab, 2) unofficial academic transcripts, 3) names of 2 potential academic references, and 4) GRE scores if available.

Questions regarding this opportunity can be directed to:
Wes Dowd
Associate Professor
School of Biological Sciences
(office) 509-335-8122; email: wes._dowd_@_wsu_ .edu (remove the underscores)