Prospective Graduate Students
The McLachlan Lab is recruiting 1-2 highly motivated PhD students with strong ecological and quantitative skills interested in bridging between long-term data, statistics and modeling to start in Fall 2014 for work on PalEON.
PalEON (PaleoEcological Observatory Network) is an interdisciplinary team of paleoecologists, ecological statisticians, and ecosystem modelers working to improve our understanding of the impact of changing climate and disturbance regimes on the structure, composition, and productivity of terrestrial ecosystems. Our general approach is to validate and improve ecosystem models through the inclusion of information from historical and paleoecological data spanning the last 2000 years. Long term data from Alaska and the Northeastern US inform statistical estimates of ecosystem change which are then used to drive and validate terrestrial ecosystem models (see: PalEON Project for more details).
Specific graduate research projects will fall within the PalEON framework and focus on 1) comparing historical forest composition at time of Midwest settlement (ca. 1830-50s) to current forests, and 2) historical forest productivity using tree rings. These data will then be incorporated into statistical and ecosystem models to project ecosystem response to future climate change.
How to Apply
Interested candidates should provide Jason McLachlan and Jody Peters with (1) a letter describing research interests, professional goals and relevant prior experience (no more than a page). Please specify any background or interest you have in historical survey data, dendroecology, sediment paleoecology, statistics, and/or ecosystem modeling and (2) a CV including undergraduate/graduate GPA and GRE scores. Candidates will also need to apply to the University of Notre Dame Graduate School prior to January 5, 2014.
We are always looking for interested and motivated undergraduate students to work on independent and ongoing research projects in the lab. If you are interested, please email Jody Peters with a brief description of your background, goals, and any projects in the lab that interest you.
You can check out the work current undergraduates are doing in the lab on the People page.