Division of
Natural and Applied Sciences

PhD and MS positions in prairie restoration/soil health at Western Michigan University 

Graduate Student Position Soil Health and Prairie Restoration 
 
There are two open positions available for graduate students in Dr. Kathryn Docherty research group at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI. Students will be involved with NSF- and USDA-funded projects examining how the inclusion of prairie strips into agricultural landscapes can improve soil health and increase the potential for soil carbon sequestration. Field work will be conducted at Kellogg Biological Station, at the Edward Lowe Foundation and on privately-owned farms in southwest Michigan. Laboratory work will include the use of molecular assays and bioinformatics approaches to examine microbial community composition and stable isotope assays to measure microbial growth rates, along with a suite of standard soil health measurements. The graduate students will be involved in coordinating and implementing outreach activities in collaboration with the MiSTRIPS program at KBS.  

 
The start date for these positions is flexible, between May 1, 2024 – September 1, 2024. Applicants must hold a Bachelors Degree in Biology, Environmental Science or a related field by the start of their first semester, and must apply for admission to the graduate program by February 1, 2024. Applicants to either the M.S. or PhD programs are encouraged to apply, particularly those with relevant work experience and/or a M.S. degree related to this research. Academic year funding and tuition will be provided through a combination of teaching and research assistantships. Full summer funding is available and students can be provided with a monetary subsidy for health insurance if needed. 
 
Please contact kathryn.docherty@wmich.edu with 1) a resume and 2) a statement of interest. After a virtual interview, a short list of students will be invited to visit WMUs campus for an in-person interview. 
 
Docherty lab website: https://kdochert8.wixsite.com/dochertylab 
WMU Biological Sciences Graduate Programs Website: https://wmich.edu/biology/academics 
MiSTRIPS website: https://lter.kbs.msu.edu/who-we-help/ag-professionals/mistrips/