Rangelands

PhD Graduate Assistantship

University of Wyoming

Seeking a PhD student at University of Wyoming (UW) for a research project assessing the social science of private ranches as it pertains to rangeland soil, vegetation, and livestock grazing in Wyoming. The project will a) examine the linkages between regenerative pasture, soil, and rangeland management and overarching ecosystem function, and b) understanding how maintaining rural lifestyle and well-being affects management decisions of private ranches. As pasture and rangelands are complex social-ecological systems, we propose that the study of people and land are necessary in these systems. To meet these goals, we will engage ranchers directly and employ the most current scientific landscape assessment tools to build integrated models that work to represent each component of grazing land social-ecological systems and their socioeconomic well-being. Socio-ecological measurements will be linked with agricultural metrics such as soil response, forage production, grazing days, and livestock performance.

Qualifications: We encourage applicants with BS and MS degrees in Social Science, Rangeland Management, Natural Resources, Botany, Ecology, Environmental Science, Agronomy, Animal Science, or a related field completed by December 2022 and a competitive GPA (>3.0 required) (http://www.uwyo.edu/esm/graduate/prospective/apply.html). Experience working in rural communities and an interest in ranch enterprises is required. Student must be self-disciplined, physically able to perform fieldwork with little supervision, able to work well with research technicians, and have strong verbal, written, and computational skills. We also seek a student with strong interests in scientific writing. We encourage applicants with previous experience and coursework in agricultural communications, social science, rangeland plant communities, livestock, and soils, and applications from underrepresented groups. Proficiency in spoken/written English, a valid US driver’s license, and the ability to pass Wyoming DMV check are needed. Relocation to Laramie, Wyoming is also required.

Specifics: The project is funded by the Noble Research Institute and the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research with support for the doctoral student for four years and ideally the student will start in January of 2023. The graduate assistantship includes a stipend, health insurance, and tuition and fees (approval pending).