2024 BES Projects

Instructions for students - Read first

Step 1: Review the faculty project summaries (see below).

Step 2: Once you have found a project that interests you, email the project mentor (see guide to writing emails to faculty here) to set up a time to connect and learn more about the project. NOTE: Only contact 2 faculty mentors at a time. If you haven't heard back in 4 business days, followup with a second email.

Step 3: Meet with potential faculty mentors to discuss the project and potential acceptance into their lab.

Step 4: Apply to the Branch Experiment Station Research Internship Program, indicating your preferred projects. Application opens March 1 and closes April 1 @ 11:59pm. Applications will include a resume, cover letter outlining your research interests, and unofficial transcript. NOTE: if you haven't had a chance to do steps 2&3, please still submit an application so that you can be considered. There will be time after the application deadline to have meetings with faculty.

Projects

Climate Adaptation Demonstrations for Diversified Vegetable Growers

Faculty Mentor: Heidi Noordijk (heidi.noordijk@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: North Willamette Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Aurora, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

Specific Duration of Project: June 15, 2023 through September 20, 2023

 

Project Description:

Climate adaptive farming practices will be demonstrated at the North Willamette Research & Extension Center to show how farmers can adapt their farming practices to mitigate loss from drought conditions. The demonstrations will focus on three key practices: dry farming, reduced tillage, informed irrigation scheduling. Three field days will be held throughout the summer focusing on these topics. Speakers for the field days will include OSU specialists, NRCS and SWCD conservationists, and panels of experienced farmers.   

  • Dry farming - Growing crops without irrigation. The demonstration will show how dry farming can increase water efficiency and reduce the need for irrigation. This is useful in areas where water is scarce or where drought conditions are common. 
  • Reduced tillage - Using less intensive methods of soil preparation, such as using a chisel plow or harrow. These practices minimize soil disturbance, increase soil water holding capacity, helps sequester carbon, and support soil health. Tarping for no-till and reduced till management is covering the soil with plastic tarp to prevent sunlight (occultation) from reaching the plants underneath. Helping kill weeds, breakdown previous crop residue, warm the soil, prevent nitrate leaching, allow earlier field access during periods of persistent rain.  
  • Drip irrigation decision tools - Using soil moisture data and weather models to inform when and how much irrigation to apply will help conserve water and improve crop yields in a changing climate. Crop water needs at various growth stages will be researched for optimal irrigation use. 

 

Project Objectives:

Date collected will be shared throughout the season and during the field days to demonstrate how these practices can be used together to create a more sustainable and efficient farming system helping armers adapt to a dryer climate.  Feedback from farmers and researchers during field days will inform planning for the 2024 and 2025 growing seasons.

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Student employee will assist with field preparations, such as; planting, spreading amendments, transplanting and direct seeding in field, irrigation setup (including drip), water monitoring, installing trellis and training crops, weeding with hand tools and helping setup the cultivating tractor, harvesting and post-harvest crop cleanup. Employee will also assist with seeding and monitoring seedlings in propagation house.
  • Data collection, photos, and written observations will be made throughout the season and updated on project website and social media account.  The student employee will assist in planning the Climate Adaptive Workshop Series that will take place on 3 dates between July-Sept. Tasks will include outreach, creating and installing signs, tent and table set-up and take down, creating and collecting evaluations, and assisting in preparation for flavor evaluations. The student will follow and evaluate one of the Climate Adaptive strategies demonstrated throughout the season and share their experience during the field day.  
  • The student will write an article for the NWREC newsletter and Oregon Small Farm News about the project. They can also develop a poster or other scholarship for their BES program report.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Experience with Word, Excel, Facebook, and Instagram.
  • Good verbal and written communication skills. 
  • Some experience in farm production and an interest in sustainable agriculture.     
  • Attention to detail.  

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Implementation of soil health practices for vegetable farmers.
  • Options for monitoring and assessing soil moisture levels using different equipment and tools.
  • Skills to assess impact of management practices on soil quality and crop health. 
  • Workshop planning, outreach, and implementation for farmers.
  • Crop management.
  • Data collection.
  • Reporting

 

Student Hourly Salary: $16/hr

Expected Hours/Week: Minimum  - 7.5 hrs, Maximum - 15 hrs

Hourly Working Parameters: Work may begin at 7:00 am during hottest parts of summer.  Field days and workshops are scheduled from 3:00-6:00 pm., work on those three days will end after clean-up and go no later than 8:00 pm.

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Hands on experience working at the Food Innovation Center, with shared responsibility in Sensory and Consumer Research & Product and Process Development

Faculty Mentor: Sarah Masoni (sarah.masoni@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Food Innovation Center

BES Station Location: Portland, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

Specific Duration of Project: Mid June to Mid September 2023, dates to be discussed specifically with mentor

 

Project Description:

Summers at the Food Innovation Center are filled with a variety of projects focused on development or research of food products.  This summer internship will include:  working in the sensory and consumer research lab, possible on site and off site testing, and product and process development work.  Hands-on experience with real client projects of the Food Innovation Center.

 

Project Objectives:

Student interns will become part of the team at the FIC. Coordinating projects with two working groups (Sensory & Consumer Research and Product and Process Development) will be the responsibility of the student intern. The FIC is a laboratory that includes: a large central kitchen, Sensory and Consumer Research Lab, Focus Group Lab, Product Development Lab, Analytical Lab. Work will be performed in each of the labs depending upon what you have been asked to work on. There is a self-study project for the student intern that involves developing a food product. The information for this portion of the summer work will be released to the candidate prior to the summer internship, a bit of work preparing documents will be required in preparation. Generally, interns will be on their feet most of the day, some computer work will be required, little or no travel will be required.

 

Student Responsibilities:

Summer interns will be responsible for managing the tasks assigned by their mentors.

  • General food science lab analysis, including: pH, water activity, and refractometer readings. 
  • Lab and kitchen clean up and general organization.
  • Guided bench-top formulation work. 

For the Sensory portion, this intern will be assisting the Sensory Program Director, Sensory Specialist and other Sensory Program Staff with all aspects of sensory testing.  Duties will include:

  • meeting with clients to discuss overall testing objectives,
  • putting together a budget and formal proposal,
  • building screeners in Qualtrics,
  • performing a full category review with the sensory team and client,
  • emailing and calling for the recruitment of consumers from an existing database using Microsoft Access and Microsoft Outlook,
  • advertising through Facebook and other sites,
  • preparing the test ballot in the data acquisition system Compusense,
  • potentially working with the Institutional Review Board on consent forms,
  • preparing the test design and serving order,
  • printing labels and making copies,
  • the coding of serving materials,
  • food sample preparation, serving food samples to consumers and clean up of the sensory reception facilities post test,
  • analyzing testing results and preparing a full report for the client.

Consumer tests are conducted both at the FIC laboratory complex in Portland and off-site. The laboratory complex includes a reception area, 10 booths and a staging area, a descriptive analysis/focus room, observation area and a commercial kitchen. The student intern will gain excellent real world, hands on skills in dealing with clients and administering sensory tests from beginning to end.  Students will be responsible for reporting these results to FIC staff upon completion of their internship.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • An interest in food product development and general food science with excellent communication and computer skills is preferred. 
  • Use of computer, and basic lab skills, dishwashing, and organizational skills will be required.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The intern will leave the summer internship with a broad knowledge of product and process development, sensory and consumer research, and basic project management skills

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: There may be an opportunity to work on a weekend, but this is not common, there may also be after hours work, but this is not common.

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Management of Diseases in Central Oregon Seed and Specialty Crops

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Jeremiah Dung (Jeremiah.Dung@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Central Oregon Agricultural Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Madras, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

 

Project Description:

High value specialty crops are a major component of agriculture in central Oregon. The area is a major producer of carrot seed, supplying over 60% of the hybrid carrot seed planted in the U.S. Central Oregon also produces Kentucky bluegrass seed, peppermint for oil and tea leaf, garlic and onion seed, wheat, seed potatoes, and alfalfa hay and seed. Pests and diseases present a significant challenge to crop production by reducing yields, increasing costs of production, and limiting market acceptability.

 

Project Objectives:

The Plant Pathology Lab at the Central Oregon Agricultural Research and Extension Center (COAREC) is focused on the study and control of plant diseases affecting the high-value specialty crops of the region. We use both traditional and molecular techniques to answer applied and basic questions related to the biology and control of fungal and bacterial plant pathogens, with the goal of developing integrated disease management programs for long-term, sustainable control. Specific research focuses on pathogen detection and quantification, population biology of plant pathogens, spatial and temporal dynamics of plant disease, and identifying environmental factors that contribute to plant disease epidemics.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The intern working on this COAREC BES Experiential Learning Experience will have the opportunity to be involved one or more research projects. Specific research projects will depend on the intern's interests, academic and career goals, funding availability, and project needs. Research projects planned for 2023 include, but are not limited to, the epidemiology and management of fungal and bacterial diseases affecting carrots grown for seed, peppermint grown for oil, Allium crops, and Kentucky bluegrass grown for seed.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

This COAREC BES Experiential Learning Experience will require the intern to work in laboratory, greenhouse and field conditions and with basic computer software (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint). Although not required, a background in biology, microbiology, molecular biology, and/or plant pathology would be advantageous for this experiential learning experience.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The intern will have the opportunity to gain skills related to experimental design, field research (survey and sampling protocols, small plot research), microbiology (aseptic technique and culturing of fungi and/or bacteria), molecular biology (DNA extraction, PCR, gel electrophoresis, quantitative-PCR), and basic plant pathology techniques (inoculating plants, determining disease incidence and severity, soil sampling, and isolating plant pathogens from infected tissues). The intern will learn methods associated with data collection, basic data analyses, and summarizing research results for diverse audiences including growers, industry stakeholders, and the scientific community.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: Work hours may vary depending on crop maturity, weather, grower schedules, or other factors that cannot be controlled.

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Monitoring of Horticultural Crop Insect Pests in Southern Oregon

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Govinda Shrestha (govinda.shrestha@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Southern Oregon Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Central Point, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023, Fall 2023

 

Project Description:

The Southern Oregon climate is known for the production of high-quality horticultural crops, including, pear, grape, and hemp. Many horticultural crops are affected by a variety of insect pests that causes crop yield loss. To address these pest management challenges, each year from spring to fall, the SOREC Entomology Program conducts field research utilizing several pest management tools such as monitoring, surveying and biological control. Some of the key insect pests that we're currently working on include pear psylla and codling moths in pear, vine mealybugs in grape, and hemp aphids and corn earworms in hemp. In this internship, the student will have an opportunity to learn: 1) the monitoring and surveying of insect pests on horticultural crops, 2) insect identification techniques, and 3) develop outreach skills by direct interaction with growers.

 

Project Objectives:

The project objectives are to provide an opportunity for a student to learn pest monitoring and insect pest identification techniques, and field extension network with growers.

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Traveling in state vehicle for checking insect traps/pheromone lures in orchards, vineyards, and hemp fields in Jackson and Josephine Counties;
  • Counting insects on a microscope;
  • Keeping legible field notes;
  • Comfortable working alone

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

The student should have a driver's license. No prior experience is required for this internship, though it will be a plus if the student has some experience working on insect ecology and biology. 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

From this internship, the student will learn the monitoring and surveying techniques for insect pests on horticultural crops, know how to identify common horticultural insect pests, and become familiar with southern OR cropping systems.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 30-40 hours per week

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Spring Wheat Breeding in Eastern Oregon

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Ryan Graebner (graebner@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Columbia Basin Agricultural Research Center

BES Station Location: Pendleton, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

Specific Duration of Project: Start and end dates are flexible to accommodate a student's schedule. It is expected that this position would begin in May or June and end in September.

 

Project Description:

The Oregon State University Cereal Extension Program tests wheat varieties in roughly eighteen winter-seeded sites and eight spring-seeded sites around the state of Oregon each year. These field trial locations are chosen to cover the main cereal producing regions in the state. Oregon has relatively minor spring wheat acreage compared to Washington due in part to its perceived limited economic viability in the state. The difference in spring wheat acreage between Oregon and Washington is also driven by an absence of spring wheat varieties that were bred for local conditions. This restricts options for controlling winter annual grassy weeds and limits the flexibility of farmers to quickly respond to premiums in the dark northern spring market. To address this, the OSU Cereal Extension Program is conducting a small-scale spring wheat breeding effort with the objective of developing one or more economically viable spring wheat varieties for dryland growing regions of Oregon with a focus on disease resistance and end-use quality.

 

Project Objectives:

Three years of selections have been completed in greenhouse and field settings to seed nine experimental lines at four field sites collocated with statewide spring wheat and barley variety trials. The student will assist in the evaluation of these spring wheat lines throughout the 2023 field season, participate in harvest activities, process and analyze collected grain samples, and interpret and report results.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student in this position will play a key role in evaluating and advancing experimental spring wheat lines that with luck, may result in one or more economically viable, disease resistant, high-quality varieties for dryland growing regions in Oregon. The student will be expected to

  1. record detailed field notes related to pest, disease, and environmental damage, as well as growth and development of experimental spring wheat lines,
  2. participate in maintaining field trials including hand-weeding,
  3. combine harvest and collect seed by hand,
  4. clean and process grain samples, and
  5. use near-infrared spectroscopy to determine protein content and test weight of collected grain samples.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Experience working outdoors in remote, hot, and dusty environments around heavy equipment and an ability to drive pickups and trailers is preferred but not required.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

As an integral part of the Cereal Extension Program a student may expect to develop a greater understanding of dryland wheat production systems, learn the basics of plant breeding techniques, variety testing, wheat development and physiology, near-infrared spectroscopy, disease screening, and end-use quality metrics. A successful student will also gain experience working in the field, laboratory, and greenhouse, gain proficiency in data collection, entry, and management.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $18/hr

Expected Hours/Week: Approximately 40 hours per week

Hourly Working Parameters: Normal work hours are from 7:30 am to 4 pm. On days when the program is harvesting students will be expected to travel - rarely, but occasionally overnight. A student may work outside of normal work hours and more than 40 hours during the busy harvest season.

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Monitoring First Foods in dry forest and rangeland ecosystems of northeastern Oregon

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Bryan Endress (bryan.endress@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center

BES Station Location: Union, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

 

Project Description:

Many forb species of the grassland, shrubland and dry forest ecosystems of the interior Pacific Northwest are important to the health, diet, and culture of Indigenous people of the region.  However, information on the status, trends, and health of many food plants is lacking and little is known about how invasive species, changing fire regimes, livestock grazing, or land management actions (fuels reduction, stand thinning, prescribed fire etc.) affect forb abundance. We developed a monitoring protocol to address this knowledge gap for the Blue Mountains and Columbia Plateau ecoregions of northeast Oregon.  A collaborative group including tribal, university, agency, and non-governmental organization partners developed the protocols. Protocols utilize permanent plots to measure and track density and frequency of 17 culturally important species and record important site characteristics. Plots are established in areas of concern or interest as identified by tribal partners and land managers, as well as at sites with planned management actions. Plots are sampled prior to treatment which provides pre-treatment data and the ability to monitor forb responses following treatments. Data are used to inform management, restoration, and conservation efforts.

 

Project Objectives:

Establish permanent monitoring plots; collect data on species of interest; describe vegetation conditions; collect native seeds for restoration efforts

 

Student Responsibilities:

Conduct field work to collect ecological data as well as native seeds in support of the project in the region. This includes private, state, federal, and tribal lands. Enter data on tablets, upload, and proofread. Maintain detailed records and notes. Contribute to a positive work environment.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Conduct field work to collect ecological data as well as native seeds in support of the project in the region. This includes private, state, federal, and tribal lands.
  • Enter data on tablets, upload, and proofread.
  • Maintain detailed records and notes.
  • Contribute to a positive work environment.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Establish monitoring plots to collect ecological and natural resource data
  • Measure plant, vegetation, and soil parameters
  • Collect and process native seeds for restoration

 

Student Hourly Salary: $16/hr

Expected Hours/Week: We work four 10 hour days (6am to 4:30pm with a 30 min lunch, M-TH) each week with Friday-Sunday off

Housing Benefit: Yes; housing is available at the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Riparian restoration to support salmon recovery in the Blue Mountains

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Bryan Endress (bryan.endress@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center

BES Station Location: Union, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

 

Project Description:

 

Assist research team from OSU, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife & USDA Forest Service assessing riparian restoration for salmon, and the role of cattle, elk, and deer in influencing riparian health, condition and recovery. Assist with data collection and project implementation. This includes vegetation, habitat and environmental data collection in riparian and upland habitats; collect and analyze trail camera data on location and movement of cattle and wildlife; assessment of aquatic invertebrate and bryophyte communities; measure and monitor stream channels and streamside vegetation in response to cattle, elk and deer use to evaluate effects of herbivory on riparian restoration efforts to improve salmonid habitat in the Blue Mountains.

 

Project Objectives:

Evaluate the rate of riparian recovery following restoration and the effects herbivory by cattle, elk and deer may play in affecting restoration success

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Collect data to evaluate restoration progress, including: macro-invertebrates, grass, forms, shrubs and trees;
  • GPS beaver dams,
  • Assist in managing wildlife camera traps;
  • Evaluate grazing impacts on restoration by measuring stubble height, stream bank alteration, and woody plant use.

Training is provided.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • strong desire to learn;
  • ability to work well with others;
  • experience working in natural areas (forest, rangelands, etc.) in warm, rugged conditions;
  • previous coursework in ecology, natural resources or botany.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn techniques to monitoring vegetation recovery
  • Collect ecological and natural resource data
  • Learn how to measure and collect invertebrate, plant, vegetation, and soil parameters

 

Student Hourly Salary: $16/hr

Expected Hours/Week: We work four 10 hour days (6am to 4:30pm with a 30 min lunch, M-TH) each week with Friday-Sunday off

Housing Benefit: Yes; housing is available at the Starkey Experimental Forest and Range

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Research Intern on Multi-Crop, Soil Water and Climate Studies

Faculty Mentors: Brian A. Charlton (brian.a.charlton@oregonstate.edu) and Dr. Everald McLennon (everald.mclennon@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Klamath Basin Research & Extension Center

BES Station Location: Klamath Falls, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

Specific Duration of Project: May 2023 to August 2023

 

Project Description:

Multiple research opportunities include:

  1. Industrial hemp grain and fiber trials
  2. Potato variety trials and seed potato production
  3. Winter and spring cereal grain crops (wheat and barley) variety testing trials,
  4. Direct and indirect involvement with scholarly activities such as data collection, arrangement, analysis, literature search etc.

 

Project Objectives:

Learn research field plot technique, analyze and interpret data, broad understanding of agronomic disciplines - plot management, pathology, entomology, soil science, etc. Intern will work closely with project leaders and independently as appropriate. Intern will work in varying conditions both indoors and outdoors including inclement weather.

 

Student Responsibilities:

Intern will collect and read insect trapping cards weekly. Insect identification for psyllids, leafhoppers, tuber moth, and aphids will be counted and disseminated to producers via a weekly newsletter. Intern will learn to visually detect potato viruses and confirm results using field diagnostic kits. The intern will be involved in data collection such as plant emergence, vigor, plant height, maturity, harvesting etc. for various on-going and new research projects. Intern will be involved in plot management of hemp and small grains field trials. Forage sample collection, weighing and grinding of samples will also help to gain experiences in this research field. Intern will have opportunity to operate farm machinery as research trial needs dictate. Data entry and summaries will be performed as appropriate. Intern will be guided by tenure track faculty in their future career direction and professional development.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Good communication skills,
  • know how to work in an interdisciplinary team,
  • ability to operate farm machinery, and
  • eagerness to learn are preferred skills.
  • Intern will need to obtain ATV and forklift certification. We will provide the training necessary to obtain these certifications if intern doesn't already possess them. We provide on-site job training, so experience isn't necessary.

 

Student Learning Outcomes: 

  • Intern will learn how to design various field plot arrangements and management, basic data entry and statistical analysis.
  • Intern will learn basic insect identification, disease diagnosis, weed identification, etc.
  • Intern will also have opportunities to analyze soil sample results and interpret nutritional status of sample.
  • Intern will learn how to supervise weather data in the field of agriculture.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15.50/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs. per week, may occasionally exceed during peak rouging events. It can be less hours per week if students have other activities in summer.

Hourly Working Parameters: Intern may occasionally need to irrigate on weekends or under frost events. Supervision will be provided as needed.

Housing Benefit: On-site housing is available if needed.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Evaluating algal diet composition and feeding method on larval performance of Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas)

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Neil Thompson (Neil.Thompson@usda.gov)

BES Station: Hatfield Marine Science Center

BES Station Location: Newport, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

Specific Duration of Project: Dates are flexible based on student availability

 

Project Description:

Pacific oyster is the most abundantly cultured shellfish on the Pacific coast of the United States. Animal husbandry methods are still relatively underdeveloped compared to other agricultural products. One outstanding question is the utility of using Nannochloropsis algae in shellfish aquaculture. Preliminary data suggest that Nannochloropsis may increase growth and survival, yet no controlled study has been conducted to date that has definitively determined if there is a positive effect on growth and survival. Nannochloropsis is a small celled algae, with a different nutritional profile compared to other commonly used algae species in shellfish aquaculture. This experiment is designed to test if the addition of Nannochloropsis has an effect on growth and survival of Pacific oyster larvae within a  breeding program animal husbandry system.

 

Project Objectives:

Research goals: determine if different algal diets have a statistically significant effect on growth and survival of Pacific oyster larvae.  The student will produce data from animals that have been previously sampled and preserved.  The first objective of the student's work will be to produce measurement data and survival data for all samples. After data collection, the student will work on summarizing data and assisting in statistical analysis of the data.  It is expected that this project will result in a peer-reviewed journal publication that the student will be a co-author on. 

 

Student Responsibilities:

Using microscopy and computer software, count and measure larvae from multiple treatments. All samples have been previously collected and the student would be primarily tasked with data collection from preserved specimens.  There will be opportunity to assist in animal husbandry activities of Pacific oyster, but the vast majority of the student's project will be spent conducting data collection and analysis in the lab.  Once survival and growth data are collected the student will conduct QA/QC on the data and assist/perform data analysis to determine if larval performance is influenced by feeding method and algal composition.  The student will also write a report that summarizes the methods they employed and the results from their research efforts.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Experience using light microscopes. 
  • Familiarity with image analysis software and/or ability to learn new software programs. 
  • Experience working in a laboratory environment  

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Data collection skills, sample handling and processing skills, image analysis using computer software. The student will be highly experienced in microscope work after completion of this project.  Student will assist with data preparation and statistical analysis. There is potential for skill development in R, the open-source statistical software used widely in biological science. The student will also be exposed to a working shellfish breeding program that is producing multiple algal species for Pacific oyster year classes. Opportunities to assist in animal husbandry of breeding program oysters are likely. 

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15.59/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 20 hours minimum, 40 hours maximum per week

Hourly Working Parameters: The student is expected to work normal business hours.

Housing Benefit:  The Coast to Valley bus operated by Benton and Lincoln counties provides round-trip service from the OSU Corvallis campus to HMSC for approx $5 per ride.  There is the potential for staying at HMSC housing, see https://hmsc.oregonstate.edu/housing for details and costs associated with this option.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Improving pollinator health in riparian areas and forests: investigating effects of watershed restoration and forest management on native bees and the plants they depend on

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Sandy DeBano (Sandy.DeBano@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Hermiston, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

 

Project Description:

Riparian areas and forests are key natural resources in eastern Oregon, providing many ecosystem services for humans, including habitat for wildlife, hunting opportunities, and timber.  These areas also provide critical habitat for pollinators, including native bees which, in turn, are important crop pollinators. In fact, native bees are estimated to pollinate over $3 billion of crops in the US annually. Because of this, producers and land managers are interested in developing management plans that not only meet traditional natural resource goals, but also maximize pollinator health in these areas. This internship focuses on how watershed restoration and forest management influence native bees in eastern Oregon.

 

Project Objectives:

The intern involved with this project will work on two projects focused on how watershed restoration and forest management influence native bees. The watershed restoration project will take place at five sites located throughout eastern Oregon where active watershed  restoration projects are occurring. The forest project will take place at the USFS Starkey Experimental Forest and Range near La Grande, OR. The objectives of the projects are to: 1) examine how watershed restoration affects riparian bee communities and the plants they depend on; and 2) investigate the effect of thinning and native ungulate herbivory on native bees and the plants they depend on in forest habitats. 

 

Student Responsibilities:

The internship will be involved in both field and laboratory work. Field work may last all day and involve physical activities such as extensive walking to and among field sites while carrying up to 25 pounds of equipment, collecting bees and other insects using nets and other trapping techniques, and sampling plants. It is anticipated that 50% of the intern's time will be spent in the field and the remaining time in the laboratory. Most field work will take place at remote locations that involve staying in field station housing or camping for up to a week at a time. Laboratory work will consist of preparing insect specimens for identification (e.g., washing, drying, pinning, and labeling specimens), organizing insect collections, cataloging plant specimens, and entering data into Excel.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Although helpful, no previous experience with insects or plants is necessary. The intern must have a driver's license.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The intern can expect to learn or further develop existing skills in vegetation sampling, bee sampling methods, laboratory techniques (including bee and plant preparation and preservation), data entry and analysis, and presentation skills in the development of their final project.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hours/week

Hourly Working Parameters: The student may need to work weekends or outside of the 8AM - 5PM workday when conducting fieldwork.

Housing Benefit: Housing is provided at the HAREC Station.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Climate change adaption for horticulture production systems

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Lloyd Nackley (lloyd.nackley@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: North Willamette Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Aurora, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

Specific Duration of Project: when available. May – October

 

Project Description:

Join a fun lab this summer for Horticultural Research. This position is a great opportunity to network with Ag. Science profs. and grad. students. Also, a great opportunity to get technical experience with Ag. research in a relaxed and supportive lab group. Our farm is located near Wilsonville, OR, at the North Willamette Research and Extension Center. The BES student will support our team who are managing a variety of experiments mostly around irrigation and nutrient efficiency. The BES student will help us assess how our scientific treatments affects growth, nutrient release, and water quality. Search “Nackley Lab Blog Oregon State” and our Instagram page to see what we’re working on.

 

Project Objectives:

Our mission is to sustain horticultural productions systems by partnering with growers and academics to provide research-based solutions. Our programs take four main themes that address major challenges to nursery and greenhouse production in Oregon: 1. Irrigation application; 2. Pest management; 3. Plant nutrition; and 4. climate adaptation. Our projects are designed to provide information that will support vibrant, verdant, urban and rural communities. We seek the balance between the low resource-use while maximizing plant health/quality. Often we grow plants the wrong way so you don’t have to.

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Plant Research 60%. Hand weed plots; check irrigation emitters for plots; perform daily assessments of plant health; check water quality; mix potting media for containers; seed and thin container plants; transplants and/or seeds plots; download data from loggers; clean research workspace and storage area; labels plots; monitors greenhouse and lath house field climate.
  • Data Collection. 30%. Assists with biomass sampling, seed harvest, and data collection for nursery production trials according to study protocols.
  • Field day(s) prep. 10%. Maintain buildings, grounds, fences, roads, and other research facilities; manages land not currently involved in research projects (including mowing, string trimming, pruning, mulching, and hand weeding); assist Nursery program as needed in conducting tours, training, and field days for the public.
  • Working Conditions: Work is mainly performed outdoors at the research farm, in scientific laboratory, research greenhouses, and office settings. The ability work in and dress appropriately for all weather conditions is required. Duties may include lifting heavy objects (up to 50 lb); standing, kneeling or crawling for long periods of time; walking over plowed fields or uneven surfaces; and other strenuous activities such as hoeing weeds, shoveling, operating push mowers, and string trimmers.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Minimum Qualification:
    • Employment Eligibility Requirements (http://fa.oregonstate.edu/stu-manual/500-employment-eligibility-requirements)
    • This position requires driving a University vehicle or a personal vehicle on behalf of the University; therefore, the incumbent must successfully complete a Motor Vehicle History Check, possess and maintain a current, valid driver’s license in their state of residence, be determined to be position qualified and self-report convictions as per OSU 576-056-0000 et seq.
  • Preferred (Special) Qualifications:
    • Competence in Microsoft Office programs including Excel, Word and PowerPoint
    • Experience working on a farm.
    • Two years of college-level courses in Horticulture/Crop Science/Agronomy/Soil Science/Botany or other Biology/Natural Resources discipline.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Irrigation programing and troubleshooting;
  • Plant nutrition optimization,
  • Weed management practices;
  • Equipment training and use.
  • Experience with environmental sensors and data management; experience with hydroponic production.

 

Student Hourly Salary:

  • Min Hourly Rate: $10.75 (Standard); $10.50 (Non-Urban); $12.00 (Portland Metro)
  • Max Hourly Rate: $17.00 (Standard & Portland Metro); $16.50 (Non-Urban)

 

Expected Hours/Week: min. 16 – max. 32 

Hourly Working Parameters: flexible start time 8am – 10am end by 4pm.

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

The effect of organic amendments on the growth and production of potatoes

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Ruijun Qin (ruijun.qin@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Hermiston, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023, Fall 2023

 

Project Description:

Soils under potato production in the Columbia Basin region exhibit poor soil fertility conditions and limited water and nutrient holding capacity. Many studies have shown that organic amendment may be effective in improving soil quality. In the region, there are rich sources of manure and biochar materials, which provide enormous potential for applying organic materials to soils. Recycling manure in agricultural lands possesses agronomic benefits such as providing nutrients for crops, maintaining soil health, improving soil organic carbon content and t, and enhancing microbial biomass, and activity. Biochar is a carbonaceous material made from pyrolysis of organic residues (e.g., corn stalk, bean straw, manure, pinewood, etc.) under anoxic conditions and has been extensively studied as a potential soil amendment to enhance soil quality with subsequent positive impacts on crop productivity. However, the information on the biochar and manure application in the Columbia Basin of Eastern Oregon is limited. The purpose of this project is to evaluate the agronomic and environmental impacts of organic materials application to potato production in the Columbia Basin region, one of the most important potato production regions in the Pacific Northwest.

 

Project Objectives:

This project will be based on field trials and laboratory incubation studies with the objectives of 1) understanding soil nutrient availability, 2) evaluating the field performance of potato crops in the field trial.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The main work responsibility will be observing and measuring crop growth, taking soil and plant samples, learning techniques for field measurement, recording and processing data, and/or reporting project progress. Besides this project, the students may have the opportunity to participate in other projects such as wheat, bluegrass, dry beans, alfalfa, soil health, etc. The student is also encouraged to develop and test research ideas.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Applicable majors include soil and crop science, agronomy, horticulture, ag-engineering, food technology, ecology, and other natural science-related majors. Applicants should be motivated, hardworking, team players, and physically able to work in field conditions.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

This project will provide good opportunities for students to gain experiences and knowledge in agricultural sciences through laboratory study and field trials. Particularly, the student will gain knowledge on the organic amendment, especially biochar, and potato crops. Based on the research findings, students will be able to develop project reports, prepare presentations, and/or even develop publications with the supervision of the mentor and postdoc. The student may also have the chance to gain experience in the commercial fields of the crop industry.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $16.50/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: In general, the students will work during the regular work day time

Housing Benefit: There might be a space in a student house available

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Grapevine Pathology Research in Southern Oregon

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Achala KC (achala.kc@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Southern Oregon Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Central Point, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023, Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024

 

Project Description:

In plant pathology lab at SOREC, we research on diseases of pears, wine grapes, and hemp towards developing disease management programs. The microorganisms causing disease on these crops may vary from fungus, bacteria, or virus. We have several ongoing projects that involve collection, isolation, and identification of these microorganisms. The undergraduate student will work on a project related to the management of grapevine trunk diseases (GTDs) in wine grapes. GTD is a complex of fungal diseases caused by several fungal pathogens. In commercial production system, one of the common management practices for this disease is pruning wound protection by fungicides application. During pruning season, we applied several fungicides to the pruning wound to understand their relative effectiveness in preventing GTDs. We have already collected the pruning wound tissues that need to be processed in the lab to understand the efficacy of treatments. The undergraduate student will assist a graduate student in this project while handling the activities independently. To familiarize students with the project, they will have opportunities to initial training and supervision on following protocols and running equipment. To assist with student’s project goals, progress, and timelines, there will be periodic meeting and constant mentoring throughout the project period. Besides the main project, the students will have opportunities to participate in other plant pathology research if desired by the student.

 

Project Objectives:

To understand the relative efficacy of commercially available products to manage grape vine trunk diseases.

 

Student Responsibilities:

Student’s day-to-day responsibilities will include: preparing culture media, culturing fungal isolates in the artificial media, isolating pathogens, tissue processing for DNA extraction, assist with PCR and qPCR analysis, counting spores under the microscope, organizing the isolate inventory, data collection, data entry and management, and preliminary data analysis.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Skills in Microsoft office suite, especially Excel and Word
  • Ability to work independently as well as part of a team
  • Ability to follow instructions and protocols
  • Familiarity with lab research is preferred but not required

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The student should expect to learn skills in sterilization techniques. Since the larger part of this project involves preparing artificial media and reagents using sterilizer, culturing isolates of fungus in a sterilized media under a laminar flow hood, surface sterilizing of the utensils using incinerators etc., the student will gain skills in sterilization techniques. The student should also expect to learn basic molecular skills such as DNA extraction, PCR, and qPCR analysis. The student will also gain a valuable research experience. Since the student will be involved in a part of larger disease management project, they will gain experience in designing and implementing a research trial, following protocols, data collection, management, analysis, and result interpretation.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 30 to 40 hours/week

Hourly Working Parameters: Normal work hours

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Developing field-scale barrier technology to protect vegetable crops

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Kristie Buckland (kristine.buckland@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: North Willamette Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Aurora, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023, Fall 2023

Specific Duration of Project: Summer term, or longer if project objectives are unmet

 

Project Description:

Vegetable crops in our area are damaged by an insect pest that feeds on roots. Our project has identified a barrier method that can be applied to soil around the plants to shield from insect damage. The next step in our project is to find the ideal mixture for this barrier product using readily available agricultural waste products.

 

Project Objectives:

Identify mixture of readily available ingredients that provide a sprayable product similar to off-the-shelf product. Evaluate the efficacy of mixtures in field or greenhouse trials.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student will experiment with ingredients to find a mixture that will be easily applied through tractor mounted equipment. Daily activities may include setting up lab assay trials to evaluate the consistency and solubility of mixtures. Mixtures will also be applied to soil (in field and greenhouse pots) and evaluated for easy of application and ability to remain viable in the field.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Creative thinking
  • Excellent note-taking skills
  • Highly organized

 

Student Hourly Salary: $16/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 10-20 hrs/week

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Hands on experience working at the Food Innovation Center, with shared responsibility in Ice Cream Manufacturing via Application of Rare Sugars

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Zeynep Atamer (atamerz@oregonstate.edu) and Sarah Masoni (sarah.masoni@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Food Innovation Center

BES Station Location: Portland, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

 

Project Description:

In this project, the aim is to design and produce an ice cream with reduced sweetness. This summer internship will include working in manufacturing of ice cream with different variety of rare sugars using the new ice cream machine recently ordered in research lab in the Food Innovation Center (FIC), sensory testing, and product and process development work. Produced ice cream samples stored at different time periods will be analyzed by the sensory penal created through the FIC.

 

Project Objectives:

Student interns will become part of the team at the FIC. Designing and Production of samples will be the responsibility of the student intern. The FIC is a laboratory that includes: A large central kitchen, Sensory and Consumer Research Lab, Focus Group Lab, Product Development Lab, Analytical Lab. Work will be performed in each of the labs depending upon what you have been asked to work on. There is a self-study project for the student intern that involves designing/developing a food product. The information for this portion of the summer work will be released to the candidate prior to the summer internship, a bit of work preparing documents will be required in preparation. Generally, interns will be on their feet most of the day, some computer work will be required, little or no travel will be required.

 

Student Responsibilities:

Summer intern will be responsible for managing the tasks assigned by their mentors. General food science lab analysis, including: pH, water activity, and refractometer readings. Lab and kitchen clean up and general organization. Guided bench-top formulation work. The intern will design ice cream mix by using a variety of rare sugars obtained from the project partners and produce ice cream samples. To produce samples, a recently ordered ice cream machine will be used and the intern will be trained by his/her mentors to use the machine. Furthermore, the intern will work on the sensory analysis of the produced samples and together with the mentor prepare the related sensory questionary. This project will be conducted with the support of Oregon Ice Cream Co. and therefore, the intern will attend the organized meetings to discuss the experimental design and obtained results. It is expected to evaluate the results and prepare a report on the achieved experimental results. The student intern will gain excellent hands-on skills in manufacturing of ice cream and administering sensory tests from beginning to end. Students will be responsible for reporting these results to FIC staff upon completion of their internship.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

An interest in food product development and general food science with excellent communication and computer skills is preferred. Use of computer, and basic lab skills, dishwashing, and organizational skills will be required.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The intern will leave the summer internship with a broad knowledge of ice cream production, structure, sweeteners, product and process development, sensory and consumer research, and basic project management skills

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: There may be an opportunity to work on a weekend, but this is not common, there may also be after hours work, but this is not common

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Post-fire effects on soil health in the sagebrush biome: A science inventory for managers and practitioners

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Katherine Wollstein (wollstek@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center

BES Station Location: Burns, OR

Project Term Availability: Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024

 

Project Description:

Large and frequent wildfires increasingly threaten the sagebrush biome in the U.S. West. Changes to the physical, chemical, and biological properties of soil following fire have implications for microbial communities, nutrient cycling, plant community recovery, and fire return intervals. Given the frequency and extensiveness of rangeland wildfires, managers and practitioners must be strategic about post-fire rehabilitation priorities and focus investments where there is high recovery potential. Thus, there is a need to inventory current knowledge on the relationship between fire severity and post-fire effects on soil properties in the sagebrush biome for a rangeland manager/practitioner audience. The student will assist OSU Extension and Natural Resource Conservation Service staff in conducting a systematic literature review on fire severity (e.g., intensity, residence time) and post-fire soil properties (physical, chemical, biological) and long-term effects such as soil erosion and degradation. This project aims to produce management recommendations for rangeland managers and practitioners, and identify future research needs on soil health in the sagebrush biome. The student will gain experience searching scientific databases, synthesizing scholarly research, translating science for a manager/practitioner audiences, and working with professionals in natural resource extension and outreach.

 

Project Objectives:

  • Co-develop a methodology for a systematic literature review with OSU Extension and Natural Resource Conservation Service staff;
  • Inventory and critically appraise scientific literature on post-fire soil properties in the sagebrush biome, including chemical, physical, and biological effects of fire and the drivers of these effects;
  • Synthesize from the literature current knowledge of the relationships between fire severity (e.g., intensity, residence time) and effects on soil properties in the sagebrush biome;
  • Contribute to the development of one publication for manager/practitioner audience

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Assist OSU Extension and Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) staff in initial searches of scientific literature to develop inclusion criteria for sampling and identify relevant variables. The student will search databases for relevant journal articles and prepare summaries.
  • Assist with systematic review. This will include: (1) assembling scientific literature following a detailed sampling protocol, and (2) sorting/categorizing literature in the sample using variables (identified in study protocol).
  • Systematically sorting and categorizing scientific literature will require the student to read journal articles in the sample to identify research questions, variables examined, methods used, and geographic scope of the study. This process will be detailed in the study protocol.
  • Assist OSU Extension and NRCS in analyzing data (gathered in the sorting step), reporting results, and synthesizing findings.
  • Contribute to the development of one publication for a rangeland manager/practitioner audience. Depending on the student’s interest, this may include writing content, creating figures, or graphic design.
  • Given the collaborative nature of this project, the student will regularly communicate with OSU Extension and NRCS via email, phone, or email.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Ability to follow detailed written and/or oral instructions and study protocols
  • Effective written and/or oral communication. We encourage applicants who are comfortable asking questions to seek clarity when instructions or tasks are not clear.
  • Some familiarity with scientific literature, including the ability to identify methods used and variables examined in a study. This position is particularly suited for applicants who have the ability (or are prepared to learn) to succinctly summarize study methods, results, and implications.
  • Some experience or ability to learn data management skills (e.g., data entry, quality checks).
  • Some experience or ability to learn to use literature search databases such as Web of Science.
  • Interest in synthesizing relevant findings and translating science for manager/practitioner audiences.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The student will gain skills in:

  • Searching scientific literature and effectively distilling information such as study methods, variables, results, and implications
  • Following a detailed study protocol
  • Using systematically collected data to describe the current state of scholarship on a topic
  • Communicating findings from a study for a manager/practitioner audience
  • Working with professionals at the interface of science and practice (Extension and NRCS) The student will also become familiar with the scientific literature on post-fire soil health, especially important variables and drivers of processes.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $14/hr

Expected Hours/Week: Minimum: 8 hrs/week; Maximum: 32 hrs/week

Housing Benefit: This position could easily be remote; a Housing Benefit is included if needed.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Aquatic invertebrates in Eastern Oregon

Faculty Mentors: Dr. David Wooster (David.Wooster@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Hermiston, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

Specific Project Duration: Internship is for 10 weeks during the summer of 2023. Within that period, start and end times are flexible.

 

Project Description:

We work in eastern Oregon aquatic and forested ecosystems examining the impact of human water and land use on a variety of invertebrate species including crayfish, aquatic macroinvertebrates, and native bees (that are important pollinators). The BES intern will help out with a variety of these projects, working both in the field and in the laboratory. Field work will include aquatic macroinvertebrate sampling and crayfish trapping in local rivers and wetlands, hand-netting of bees, and identifying vegetation along transects.

 

Project Objectives:

The main objectives of our research are:

  1. Examine the impacts that human water and land use have on local invertebrates.
  2. Summarize the data we collect into forms that can be used for reports and manuscripts.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student will be responsible for all aspects of our work. This includes both field work collecting animals, measuring environmental parameters, and conducting vegetation surveys. As well as laboratory processing of invertebrate samples, data preparation, and conducting data summaries.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Although helpful, no previous experience with insects is necessary. The intern must have a valid driver’s license. Experience with the worksheet program Excel would be beneficial.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The student will learn a variety of field techniques including trap-setting, measuring environmental parameters, and laboratory processing of samples. The student will also learn how to enter data into a spreadsheet and use summary statistics and graphs to aid in interpreting data.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: Students may work more than 8 hours a day when doing fieldwork (but not more than 40 hours per week), or may start earlier than 8 AM or end later than 5 PM

Housing Benefit: Housing is available at the station and we will provide $150 a month in housing benefits.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Sustainable plant disease management in the dryland wheat production system

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Christina Hagerty (Christina.Hagerty@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Columbia Basin Agricultural Research Center

BES Station Location: Pendleton, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023, Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024

 

Project Description:

The Pendleton Cereal Pathology lab is focused on serving the producers and stakeholders of high quality Oregon wheat. Our is to conduct relevant, practical, and applied research on the biology and control of plant-pathogenic fungi and nematodes that limit yields of dryland wheat production in the Inland Pacific Northwest. We work with many pathogens including Soilborne wheat mosaic virus, Fusarium crown rot, rust, Septoria leaf blotch, Eyespot, and nematodes including Cereal cyst nematode and Root lesion nematode. Ultimately, these pests hurt profitability for farmers; our research effort is to develop affordable solutions to help farmers. Our lab is focused on many solutions including: identifying sources of genetic resistance to pests of interest, trialing seed treatments, and testing fungicides. We are also working to understand pathogen/nematode dynamics, variety blends, and fungicide resistance.

 

Project Objectives:

We work to deliver high quality data to the stakeholders of Oregon Wheat with the end goal of helping improve family farm profitability.

 

Student Responsibilities:

For this project, the student intern will be expected to spend 20-35 hours per week outdoors and up to 20 hours per week in an indoor lab/greenhouse. The intern will be working directly with other lab members to develop project work plans as part of a general research effort in the program. We can accommodate if the student has specific interests (e.g. Seeking lab experience? Seeking field work experience? Seeking data management experience?), as there are many projects going on in the program. 1) Help prepare for research plot harvest. Manage plots maps and label harvest bags 2) Sample plants from research plots, evaluate for root mass and disease 3) Help harvest plots 4) Weigh grain from harvested plots and enter data 5) Help maintain a clean and safe working environment Interest in science/agronomy and farm experience is desirable.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Timeliness, good attitude, attention to detail, able to work in hot/dry/dusty conditions. Work will be challenging but gratifying.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Limitless personal and professional development - we will work to develop whatever skills you're seeking

 

Student Hourly Salary: $18/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Housing Benefit: None, student is responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Understanding Grapevine Red Blotch Disease (GRBD) Influence on Carbon Partitioning using Labeled Isotopes

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Alexander Levin (alexander.levin@oregonstate.edu)

BES Station: Southern Oregon Research and Extension Center

BES Station Location: Central Point, OR

Project Term Availability: Summer 2023

 

Project Description:

Previous research has established a chronology of Grapevine Red Blotch Disease (GRBD) symptoms beginning with accumulation of starch in leaf tissues prior to a reduction in photosynthesis and appearance of characteristic red leaf signs. The foliar accumulation of starch and subsequent reduction in photosynthesis was attributed to feedback inhibition due to phloem impairment caused by Grapevine Red Blotch Virus (GRBV). However, how this virus impairs carbon partitioning within the vine as a result of vascular blockage has not been studied. The following experiment evaluates a progression in phloem impairment induced disturbance in carbon partitioning over two critical phenological stages potentially giving an idea on fruit yield/quality in GRBV infected grapevines. Sixteen two-year-old potted vines of known virus status (GRBV+ & GRBV-) will be arranged in a completely randomized design. Vines will be pruned to two buds and thinned to two main shoots after threat of frost has passed (mid-May). Carbon assimilation, photosynthetic gas exchange, and chlorophyll fluorescence will be measured at bloom (early-June) and at veraison (onset of fruit ripening; early-August). In addition, five vines from each infection status will be pulsed with stable carbon isotope labeled CO2 (13C) at bloom and at veraison. Shoots on each vine will be covered with a thin and transparent Mylar bag. A gas inlet will be attached to the bottom of the bag that will connect to a 50 mL tube with labeled reagents reacting to generate 13CO2. The gas will then be pumped inside the chamber containing the vine shoots using an aspirator. Each vine will be pulsed for 30 mins. Two weeks post pulsing (at each time point), the 10 treated vines will be destructively harvested together with three vines of each virus status that were not 13C treated (controls). Vines will be partitioned into different organ classes (inflorescences/clusters, leaves (upper, middle, and basal), shoot sections (upper, middle, and basal), old wood, and roots), and analyzed for relative abundance of 13C (δ13C), total potassium, and non-structural carbohydrates (NSC). Results of this project will provide an improved understanding of vascular blockage and resulting depletion of carbon assimilation and transport into ripening berries of GRBD infected vines and the disease’s impact on the vines’ long term carbon reserves and perennial survival. This understanding will open up new avenues of research which in long term may provide an opportunity for developing a potential management solution.

 

Project Objectives:

It is expected that the project will generate data for developing an understanding of GRBV pathosystem, its effect on vine physiology, and production

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Managing vines and recording vine growth and phenology
  • Irrigating and fertilizing the vines
  • Assisting with measurements
  • Assisting with sampling and sample processing for analysis
  • Assisting in lab and data analysis and preparation of reports

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Must be an enrolled undergraduate student at Oregon State University or other college or university.
  • Must be willing to work outside under Southern Oregon summer weather conditions.
  • Must be willing to learn and be open to suggestions/feedback.
  • Must be willing to work during occasional early-morning or late-afternoon sessions demanded by the specifics of the experiment.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Grapevine physiology, instrument handling, experimental methods, analytical chemistry, and data analysis.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 30-40 hrs/week

Housing Benefit: None, student is responsible for own housing

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Selection of potential drought resistant rootstocks for Rogue Valley AVA

Faculty Mentor: Alexander D. Levin

BES Station: Southern Oregon Research and Extension Center (SOREC)

BES Station Location: Central Point

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Not specified.

 

Project Description:

This project aims at evaluating performance of Pinot noir vines grafted onto 10 rootstock cultivars under irrigated field conditions of Rogue Valley American Viticulture Area (AVA) in Southern Oregon. These rootstocks are planted in a randomized complete block design in the year 2017-18 at the OSU research station in Central Point, Oregon. During experiment, vines will be watered either at 100% ETc throughout the growing season (Control) or until veraison followed by withholding irrigation till harvest (Deficit Irrigation – DI). The DI treatment will mimic the growing practice now common in the Rogue Valley, in which perennial drought forces early cessation of irrigation in vineyards. Rootstock performance will be evaluated based on various physiological and morphological means including phenology, vine water status, gas exchange, water use efficiency, berry ripening, vine yield, accumulation of stable carbon isotope (C¬13) in juice, uptake and translocation of labeled nitrogen (N15), and nutrient uptake status of the vines over three growing seasons (2023 – 2026). Results of this project will be a model for yield prediction and vine performance for evaluated rootstocks under drought conditions and recommendation of rootstocks suitable for growers when establishing a new vineyard in the region. 

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Assist with monitoring and field data collection
  • Assist with treatment imposition and maintenance of the vineyard irrigation system
  • Assist with sampling 
  • Assist with sample processing and analysis
  • Assist with data analysis and preparation of reports 

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Must be an enrolled undergraduate student at Oregon State University or other college or university. 
  • Must be willing to work outside under Southern Oregon summer weather conditions. 
  • Must be willing to learn and be open to suggestions/feedback. 
  • Must be willing to work during occasional early-morning or late-afternoon sessions demanded by the specifics of the experiment.  

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Basics of viticulture, vine physiology, instrument handling, field experimental designs, and data analysis.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr.

Expected Hours/Week: 30-40 hrs/week.

Hourly Working Parameters: Not specified.

Housing Benefit: None, student is responsible for own housing.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No.

 

Ecology, monitoring and restoration of culturally-significant plants in Eastern Oregon

Faculty Mentor: Bryan Endress

BES Station: Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center (EOARC)-Union

BES Station Location: Union

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Summer term

 

Project Description:

Many forb species of the grassland, shrubland and dry forest ecosystems of the interior Pacific Northwest are important to the health, diet, and culture of Indigenous people of the region.  However, information on the status, trends, and health of many food plants is lacking and little is known about how invasive species, changing fire regimes, livestock grazing, or land management actions (fuels reduction, stand thinning, prescribed fire etc.) affect forb abundance. We developed a monitoring protocol to address this knowledge gap for the Blue Mountains and Columbia Plateau ecoregions of northeast Oregon.  A collaborative group including tribal, university, agency, and non-governmental organization partners developed the protocols. Protocols utilize permanent plots to measure and track density and frequency of 17 culturally important species and record important site characteristics. Plots are established in areas of concern or interest as identified by tribal partners and land managers, as well as at sites with planned management actions. Plots are sampled prior to treatment which provides pre-treatment data and the ability to monitor forb responses following treatments. Data are used to inform management, restoration, and conservation efforts.

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Conduct field work  to collect ecological data as well as native seeds in support of the project.
  • Enter data on tablets, upload, and proofread.
  • Maintain detailed records and notes.
  • Contribute to a positive work environment.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Strong desire to learn
  • Ability to work well with others
  • Experience working in natural areas (forest, rangelands, etc.) in warm, rugged conditions
  • Previous coursework in ecology, natural resources, traditional ecological knowledge or botany

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Establish monitoring plots to collect ecological and natural resource data
  • Measure plant, vegetation, and soil parameters
  • Collect and process native seeds for restoration

 

Student Hourly Salary: $16/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: We generally work (but not always), 4- 10 hour days (M-TH), with Friday-Sunday off; most days are outside rain (snow) or shine!

Housing Benefit: Yes, housing options available at EOARC-Union or nearby.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes.

Characterizing mule deer habitat and forage availability across montane landscapes of Eastern Oregon

Faculty Mentor: Bryan Endress

BES Station: Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center (EOARC)-Union

BES Station Location: Union

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Summer 2024

 

Project Description:

Join a research team focused on measuring mule deer forage availability and quality across complex montane landscapes of eastern Oregon. The project integrates geospatial data with field-collected information on forage availability and quality, vegetation structure and composition, disturbance events, and other biophysical landscape attributes. This project is part of a collaboration between Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center - Union focused on better understand factors impacting mule deer populations in Eastern Oregon.

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Conduct field work to collect vegetation and other ecological data across subalpine, forest, and rangeland ecosystems.
  • Enter data on tablets, upload, and proofread.
  • Maintain detailed records and notes.
  • Contribute to a positive work environment.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Strong desire to learn
  • Ability to work well with others
  • Experience in plant identification, experience camping and working in natural areas (forest, rangelands, etc.) in warm, rugged conditions
  • Previous coursework in ecology, natural resources or botany

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Establish monitoring plots to collect ecological and natural resource data.
  • Measure plant, vegetation, and soil parameters.
  • Effectively work as part of a multidisciplinary research team.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $16/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: 

Generally we work 4- 10 hour days (M-TH), with Friday-Sunday off; most days are outside, rain (snow) or shine! Fieldwork entails camping at US Forest Service (or similar) campsites during many work weeks (Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings); camping gear, field gear and vehicles are provided.

 

Housing Benefit: Yes, housing is available at EOARC Union or at Starkey Experimental Forest and Range.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes.

 

Measuring soil aggregate stability and composition in different land-use sites

Faculty Mentor: Carlos Bonilla

BES Station: Hermiston Agricultural Research & Extension Center (HAREC)

BES Station Location: Hermiston

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024, Fall 2024

Specific Duration of Project: June 2024 to September 2024

 

Project Description:

Soil aggregate abundance and stability are measurements of soil quality, as stable aggregates relate to a wide range of soil ecosystem services. This project involves sampling a series of soils and relating their aggregates to some fundamental soil properties and land use management affecting soil aggregation. The project consists of soil sampling at the Hermiston Agricultural Research & Extension Center (HAREC) and some selected sites around Hermiston. In addition to fieldwork, it includes the sample analysis at the HAREC-Soil Hydrology and Irrigation Laboratory. All samples will be processed for soil physical properties, and aggregate stability will be measured with a wet sieving apparatus. 

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student will perform field soil sampling, building land-use management records for each site, and laboratory analysis for measuring some soil properties such as particle distribution, texture, aggregate abundance, and stability. All measurements will be archived on Excel spreadsheets, including GPS coordinates and documenting a photographic record.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Good communication, punctual, enthusiastic, dependable, and with a strong work ethic Experience: Although helpful, no previous experience in soil science is necessary. The intern must have a driver's license.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The student will learn the fundamentals of soil science related to soil aggregate stability and quality. The student will also learn scientific experimental design, soil sampling, and standard analytical techniques for soil physical analysis. The student will work under Dr. Bonilla's supervision.

 

Student Hourly Salary:  $16/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week

Hourly Working Parameters: 

When doing fieldwork, the student may work more than 8 hours daily but not more than 40 hours per week, starting earlier than 8 AM or ending later than 5 PM. No work on weekends.

 

Housing Benefit: $150 per month in housing benefits will be provided.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes.

Spatial variation in black rockfish (Sebastes melanops) life history traits from California to Alaska

Faculty Mentor: Cheryl Barnes

BES Station: Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station (COMES) @ Hatfield Marine Science Center (HMSC)

BES Station Location: Newport

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024, Fall 2024, Winter 2025, Spring 2025

Specific Duration of Project: Flexible start and end dates

 

Project Description:

Contemporary ecology is teeming with studies that work toward understanding climate impacts on animal populations. The lack of comprehensive biological data, however, limits our ability to estimate species responses to their environments. These data limitations are exacerbated for marine fishes that have widespread distributions. For these, we must first understand the impacts of spatial variation on our estimates before we can effectively track changes through time.   Black rockfish (Sebastes melanops) represent a major component of nearshore fisheries from central California to Alaska. Despite this, we do not yet understand how their life history varies across space. This project addresses an important informational void by estimating growth, maturity, and other key traits for black rockfish throughout their natural range. Our research will be used to inform state-based stock assessment models, refine definitions of population structure, and inform regional decision-making. This study will also provide baseline data with which to assess potential impacts of climate change on black rockfish in the future.   We are working closely with state and federal agencies to maximize the utility of our work for fisheries management and benefit the coastal communities that rely on black rockfish for food and/or economic resources. Collaborating agencies include California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW), Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADFG) and the Northwest Fisheries Science Center (National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA).  

 

Student Responsibilities:

Internship activities will promote development of the technical skills that are commonly used in marine fisheries science. Specific tasks may involve portside sampling, participating in at-sea surveys, assisting with fish dissections, preparing or ageing otoliths, assessing microscopic maturity, estimating fecundity, recording/entering/summarizing data, and/or conducting preliminary statistical analyses. This project also emphasizes the importance of community engagement, thus interns will regularly interact with fishery stakeholders.  There may also be opportunities for students to participate remotely or in a hybrid fashion. Activities for remote or hybrid internships may involve performing scientific literature reviews, identifying potential new industry collaborations, synthesizing data, and/or developing new data collection or analytical protocols.  

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

We prioritize one’s potential over experience in order to promote skill development and self confidence in undergraduate students that have not yet had opportunities to participate in scientific research. Prospective students should be organized, detail-oriented, and interested in upholding standardized data collection protocols. A keen interest in fisheries and/or marine science is desired. All necessary training for field- and lab-based work will be provided. BES Research Interns will be directly supervised by a graduate student who will be responsible for day-to-day activities. BES Research Interns will also meet with their faculty mentor on a biweekly basis (more, if requested) and participate in IMF Lab meetings.   The IMF Lab intentionally seeks out and supports diverse identities, backgrounds, and perspectives — doing so improves the quality of our work and enriches our daily lives. Thus, we strongly encourage those who identify with underrepresented and/or historically marginalized groups to apply.  

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

BES Research Interns will gain valuable, hands-on experience through field- and/or lab-based data collection and other types of project support. Students can expect to learn an assortment of tools and techniques that are commonly used in marine fisheries science. Specifically, BES Research Interns will work with a graduate student to sample and dissect fish, preserve and prepare biological samples for further processing, and collect relevant life history data (e.g., ages, maturity stages, fecundity). Some scientific literature review and/or database management may also be involved. BES Research Interns will primarily work from OSU’s Hatfield Marine Science Center (HMSC), though there may be opportunities to travel to sampling sites along the US West Coast. 

 

Student Hourly Salary: $14.20 to $19 per hr, depending on experience

Expected Hours/Week: 20-40 hr/wk; daily schedules may vary

Hourly Working Parameters: Fieldwork may occur on weekends and/or extend past 5PM

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No.

 

Seaweed Aquaculture at the Hatfield Marine Science Center

Faculty Mentor(s): Chris Langdon and Ford Evans

BES Station: Hatfield Marine Science Center (HSMC)

BES Station Location: Newport

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Summer term and possibly a couple of additional weeks before the beginning of the fall term.

 

Project Description:

Seaweed aquaculture is an emerging industry on the US West coast. There are significant challenges in the economic development that require additional research. In this project, the selected BES student will work on applications of panel culture of several different red seaweeds. These applications may include feeding sea urchins on a diet of red seaweed as well as examining the potential for offshore aquaculture of red seaweed contained in hanging panels. In addition, the student may have the opportunity to work on other aquaculture projects that involve the effects of ocean acidification and microplastics on oysters. The student will be encouraged to develop his/her own project that will be presented at the end of the summer in a poster.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student will work under the supervision of staff and researchers at HMSC. Duties will vary according to the needs of the program and the student's project, but will focus on seaweed culture.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

The BES student should be self-motivated and hard working. The student will be working in a team of students, technicians and researchers; therefore, good communication abilities are important. Experience in the cultivation of freshwater or marine organisms is desirable but not required.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The student will become familiar with marine aquaculture, especially the culture of seaweeds. This will involve learning about and participating in the construction and operation of different culture methods, measurement of production parameters, such as growth. Other more general skills will include experimental design, data analysis and interpretation, production of a poster describing the summer’s research project.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 30 to 40 hours per week

Hourly Working Parameters: Some weekend work may be needed, depending on the student's project and other program needs.

Housing Benefit: Funding for accommodation at HMSC housing will be provided during the internship

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

 

Seafood Industry Applied Projects

Faculty Mentor: Christina A. Mireles DeWitt

BES Station: Seafood Research & Education Center

BES Station Location: Astoria

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Not specified.

 

Project Description:

Students will support work on industry applied projects for the summer.  Applied projects will be based on industry needs and could focus on quality degradation as measured by bioimpedance, product shelf-life determinations as measured by sensory, microbial, and/or chemical measures.  In addition, projects could include collection and evaluation of seafood processing water, surimi processing value-addition, or seafood by-product utilization.  

 

Student Responsibilities:

Students will be expected to work in a team environment alongside scientists at the facility.  Students, depending on experience and ability, may be given small projects to conduct on their own.  In addition, projects may require work at seafood processing facilities to collect samples for projects and some work may occur on weekends or after hours.  Students need to have a drivers license in order to be able to drive a university vehicle.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Ideally student has some background in food testing, however, this is not a requirement as skills can be taught under supervision of scientist.  Students must be willing to learn new skills and to work independently once skills are verified. Students must be willing to consume seafood for sensory projects.  Preferred skills/experience: Students that have taken Food Analysis lab and Food Microbiology lab.  

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Students will learn approaches to solving seafood industry driven issues and problems.  They will learn about novel sensing technologies being developed to determine degradation and drive best practices for quality improvements.  They will learn how to determine degradation in seafood through sensory odor evaluation.  

 

Student Hourly Salary: $20/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/week, working 10-12 weeks during the summer

Hourly Working Parameters: Projects may require work at seafood processing facilities to collect samples for projects and some work may occur on weekends or after hours.  

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Utilizing cover crops to enhance sustainability and profitability of dryland wheat production system

Faculty Mentor: Christina Hagerty

BES Station: Columbia Basin Agricultural Research Center (CBARC)

BES Station Location: Pendleton

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024, Fall 2024, Winter 2025, Spring 2025

Specific Duration of Project: Not specified.

 

Project Description:

The main objectives of this project to determining the appropriate cover crops for dryland wheat production system in the Inland Pacific Northwest. The project will focus on evaluating the impacts of cover crops on weed control, soil fertility and nutrient cycling, soil health, and yield of wheat crop.

 

Student Responsibilities:

We are looking for a student intern to work with our lab team throughout the summer and month of September. The student intern will be expected to spend 20-35 hours per week outdoors and up to 20 hours per week in an indoor lab/greenhouse. He/she will be working directly with other lab members to develop project work plans as part of a general research effort in the program. Students will have opportunity to engage in many on-going projects and we can accommodate if the student has specific interests (e.g. Seeking lab experience? Seeking field work experience? Seeking data management and preliminary data analysis skills?). 

  1. Help in preparing labels and sample bags.
  2. Do plant and soil sampling, evaluate root biomass and disease scoring
  3. Help managing research plots
  4. Weigh the plant biomass and grains from the plots and enter the data in excel.
  5. Help in harvesting
  6. Help maintain a clean and safe working environment 

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Interest in science/agronomy and farm experience is desirable.  Required skills: Timeliness, good attitude, attention to detail, able to work in hot/dry/dusty conditions. Work will be challenging but gratifying. 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Student will gain full exposure to agronomic research methods. He/she will learn how to manage research plots, collect and organize data. We can teach them preliminary data analysis skills if they are interested. Student will also learn about the key agronomic principles and general crop management practices throughout the growing season. Moreover, students will gain hands-on experience in plant and soil samplings for determining plant and soil health status, crop scouting, and pest management. Students will be able to directly interact with experienced and passionate researchers and can learn technical and leadership skills from them. 

 

Student Hourly Salary: $18/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 40 hrs/wk

Hourly Working Parameters: Most weeks we work 7:30 – 4:00 pm Monday-Friday. However, student may be asked to work 10 hours in some days within a 40-hour workweek.  

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Research Assistant Hood River Tree Fruit Entomology Lab

Faculty Mentor: Christopher Adams

BES Station: Mid-Columbia Agricultural Research and Extension Center (MCAREC)

BES Station Location: Hood River

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Not Specified.

 

Project Description:

The Adams Tree Fruit Entomology Lab, located at the Mid-Columbia Agricultural Research and Extension Center (MCAREC) in Hood River, has a number of research projects planned in both pear and sweet cherry orchards. We are currently working on two invasive species that impact the tree fruit industry; the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) and Spotted Wing Drosophila (SWD). Projects will include understanding and improving trapping and monitoring of these key insects. We are also investigating parasitoid wasps for control of these and other insect pests. Pear psylla is a key pest that pear growers must control. The primary control tactic is promotion and protection of a large complex of natural enemies. We will be trying to understand how we can make this diverse beneficial complex more productive for growers. Western Cherry X Disease is a phytoplasma that lives and replicates in the vascular phloem of infected trees. It is vectored by several species of leafhoppers. We will be conducting leafhopper surveys to determine the species complex and the phenology of these insects in order to better time control measures. Other exciting projects are being developed and the candidate will have an opportunity to work on many novel projects.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student is expected to learn how to identify insect pests of tree fruit, their predators, and parasitoids. The Student will deploy and check insect monitoring traps and help to collect and process data. Much of this work will be outside in the fresh air, sunshine, and occasional wet weather, so students should enjoy being outdoors working in the field and plan to dress accordingly. Many of these studies will require insects to be identified and counted under the microscope, so quality time at the scope can also be expected. 

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Working well with others, a positive attitude, attention to detail, love of insects. 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

Students will see first-hand the challenges of growing quality fresh fruit. Students will gain experience in insect identification, experimental design, data collection and analysis, team work, and the beauty of the Hood River area.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: The student can expect to work 20 - 40 per week.

Hourly Working Parameters: This position does not require special working hours outside a normal work week.

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Invertebrate Responses to Restoration in Eastern Oregon - field collection, eDNA sample preparation, and museum specimen preparation

Faculty Mentor: David Wooster

BES Station: Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center (HAREC)

BES Station Location: Hermiston

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: The internship is for 10 weeks. Starting date is as soon as the student can get out to eastern Oregon.

 

Project Description:

Stream and riparian restoration is taking place in many areas throughout Oregon, including eastern Oregon. Many restoration projects are designed to improve stream conditions for salmon and trout. Improvements to streams resulting from restoration can be assessed by examining aquatic invertebrate assemblages. In addition, stream and riparian restoration can result in the improvement of habitat for non-target species, such as many terrestrial invertebrates. This project aims to use eDNA to assess aquatic invertebrate assemblages in and outside of stream/riparian restoration projects. In addition, another goal of the project is to examine the response of terrestrial invertebrates to riparian restoration.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student will work with a team of people in the field to collect terrestrial invertebrates. In some instances, this will require long days conducting fieldwork and involve physical activity such as extensive walking in the field while carrying up to 25 pounds of gear. The field work will take place in remote locations and the student may be required to stay in field station housing or camping for up to a week at a time. The student will also be required to work in the laboratory learning and conducting DNA extraction techniques and preparing terrestrial invertebrate specimens. The laboratory work requires attention to detail, repeatedly conducting tasks (e.g., pinning invertebrate specimens, extracting DNA from multiple samples), and patience. Laboratory work will also include entering data into Excel.  

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

The student accepting this position should have some experience conducting fieldwork and/or spending time outdoors. However, the student is also expected to spend time in the laboratory, learning DNA extraction techniques and terrestrial invertebrate sample preparation. So, some laboratory experience is also preferred. Some experience with Excel is also preferred. 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The student will learn how to design and conduct field sampling of invertebrates. The student will also learn laboratory techniques for DNA extraction and museum preparation of terrestrial invertebrates.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: The student will be expected to work 40 hours/week.

Hourly Working Parameters: 

In some cases, the student will be conducting field work that may require travel to the field site starting before 8am and finishing after 5pm. The student must be prepared to travel outside of the 8am-5pm time frame.

 

Housing Benefit: 

On-station housing will be provided while the student works at the Hermiston station. During field work that takes multiple days, housing at field stations will be provided. However, there might be a need for a student to camp during field work.

 

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? No

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No

Biological Control of Cannabis Aphids in Hemp Production

Faculty Mentor: Govinda Shrestha

BES Station: Southern Oregon Research and Extension Center (SOREC)

BES Station Location: Central Point

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024, Fall 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Not specified.

 

Project Description:

The industrial hemp is an emerging industry in Oregon and across the nation. The Southern Oregon climate is known for the production of high-quality flower and CBD hemp. One of the insect pests that is currently affecting indoor and outdoor hemp productions in Southern Oregon is cannabis aphids. The aphid species is invasive pest in North America and originated from South East Asia. Cannabis aphids feeding reduces hemp plant growth and flower yields.  Aphid parasitoids are important biological control of aphids and play an important role in aphid management.  In this internship, the student will have an opportunity to learn:

  1. The rearing of cannabis aphids and aphid parasitoids in lab conditions.
  2. Aphid parasitoid experiment methods.
  3. Develop outreach skills by direct interaction with growers.

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Traveling in state vehicle for checking insect on hemp fields in Jackson and Josephine Counties
  • Counting insects on a microscope
  • Keeping legible field notes
  • Comfortable working alone 

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

The student should have a driver's license. No prior experience is required for this internship, though it will be a plus if the student has some experience working on insect ecology and biology. 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The project objectives are to provide an opportunity for a student to learn how to conduct aphid parasitoid experiments, and field extension network with growers. 

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 30-40 hours per week

Hourly Working Parameters: N/A

Housing Benefit: None, student responsible for own housing.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes.

Exploring Climate-Adaptive Approaches: Melon Variety Trials with Dry Farming and Minimal Irrigation

Faculty Mentor: Heidi Noordijk

BES Station: North Willamette Research and Extension Center (NWREC)

BES Station Location: Aurora

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project:

 

Project Description:

Dry farming vs. minimal irrigation strategies. We will compare dry farmed melon plots to minimally-irrigated melon plots that employ soil moisture meters to inform irrigation decisions. We will compare the costs and benefits of the two water-saving farm practices including differences in yield, marketability, and input costs such as labor and water.  Melon variety trials. Dry farmed melons are becoming a valued product in Oregon. Nested within the  dry farmed and minimally-irrigated research plots, we will conduct a replicated variety trial of 5 top performing dry farm melon varieties, as determined by OSU Dry Farming Project research. Each variety will be evaluated for performance and marketability in water-limited conditions.  The project will include a public field day in Aug/Sept, to demonstrate water-wise crop production strategies, and to conduct melon tasting sessions among participants.

 

Student Responsibilities:

The research student will assist in a variety of hands-on tasks and responsibilities related to agricultural research and field management including:  Field Preparations: o Assist in plot layout. o Participate in planting activities. o Help with spreading amendments. o Assist in transplanting crops. o Set up drip irrigation systems. o Install and calibrate soil moisture sensors. Field Management: o Weed using hand tools. o Monitor and maintain the overall condition of the field. o Ensure proper growth conditions for crops. Data Collection: o Conduct soil moisture measurements. o Record irrigation usage data. o Collect yield data. o Assess crop marketability. o Participate in taste testing sessions. o Take photos and maintain written observations throughout the season. o Update project website and social media accounts with data and observations. Event Planning and Assistance: o Assist in planning and executing the NWREC Melon Dry Farmed Field Day. o Conduct outreach for the event. o Create and install signs. o Set up and take down tents and tables. o Collect evaluations from participants. o Assist in preparing for flavor evaluations. o Share findings on soil moisture and yield data during the field day. Communication and Reporting: o Write an article for the NWREC newsletter and Oregon Small Farm News about the project. o Develop a poster or other scholarly material for their BES program report. Potential Off-Site Activities: o Visit and collect data from off-site research plots. o Participate in field days with project partners across Western Oregon.  Overall, the student will be deeply involved in various aspects of agricultural research, from hands-on fieldwork to data collection and communication of findings. They will have opportunities to contribute to outreach efforts and collaborate with project partners, gaining valuable experience in agricultural research and community engagement. 

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Experience with Microsoft Word and Excel or Google Docs and Google Sheets Good verbal communication skills.  Some experience in farm production and an interest in sustainable agriculture. Attention to detail Time management and organizational skills\ Ability to work independently and as part of a team.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

 

Student Hourly Salary:

Expected Hours/Week:

Hourly Working Parameters:

Housing Benefit:

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check?

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record?

 

Summer Research Photographer

Faculty Mentor: James Sulikowski

BES Station: Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station (COMES)

BES Station Location: Newport

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Summer 2024

 

Project Description:

Do you crave adventure photography? Is the ocean always calling your name? Join the Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station  (COMES) research team as their official photographer and story teller this summer.  The incumbent  brings the story of COMES to our stakeholders  and larger audience through various forms of media including video, photo, and written copy. Each day brings new opportunities to participate in and capture the magic moments of our faculty, staffs and student adventures and activities. In addition to taking photos and filming video clips, this position will work closely with a cross-departmental group of team members to collect, manage, and share content with our stakeholders, university marketing, and general public. All collected media will be shared daily through social media along with the production of  weekly COMES content.  The incumbent will join our group to film their activities during (lab) and field (activities).  Since its inception in 1989, the Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station (COMES) has been the state’s primary research engine supporting wise use and conservation of marine resources with a primary focus on fisheries, aquaculture and seafood. Consistent with the College of Agriculture’s mission, COMES works to solve complex problems of productivity, profitability, environmental quality, and human health, and to prepare the next generation of scientists, managers, and leaders in marine resource fields.   COMES  invites candidates to apply who are energetic, enthusiastic, smart, hardworking, and fun. Science. Adventure. Fun! summarizes what we seek in and ideally seek someone who is passionate about our work, willing to seek adventure and able to tell our story to the masses.  

 

Student Responsibilities:

Applicants should already be well-versed in photography and eager to apply their visual skills to the context of what we represent. The incumbent will partake in shooting product images, portraits, and other special projects, as well as curating images to be used daily for social media posts.  Primary photographer for COMES events during the summer, covering Student Conferences (both in-person and online), as well as other events. Shooting for other projects and marketing campaigns, as assigned.  Completely confident with the technical aspects of photography so as to be able to focus on capturing strong, relational images that tell COMES  story visually.  Meet with members of COMES to discuss specific photo needs for the upcoming summer, including capturing candid photos and setting up intentional photo shoots for marketing campaigns.  Provide photos for social media posts on a frequent basis. Images are often shot, edited, and posted on the same day.  Create and maintain and keep up-to-date COMES existing process for organizing, tagging, and uploading photos.  Research current photography trends and campaigns, and present ideas for how COMES can improve utilization of photography.  Meet weekly with supervisor  for feedback, planning, and problem-solving. 

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Seeking upper-level college students with a passion for photography, the ocean, and conservation. Photographers of all backgrounds will be considered, but all applicants must be comfortable on boats and in the field. Applicants must have a high degree of self-motivation and creativity, as well as enjoy interacting in an educational outreach setting. 

  • Must be at least 18 years old by internship start date
  • Basic knowledge of post-production workflow such as  Adobe Bridge and editing in Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop
  • Adept at creative problem-solving, able to manage time well, responsible for leading projects, and able to work within deadlines
  • Able to travel and operate independently, as needed
  • Willing to receive feedback and input
  • Experience with digital camera operation and photo editing software; 
  • Have an interest in, respect for, and ability to work with people with diverse backgrounds, opinions, beliefs, abilities, and experience; 
  • Strong work ethic and will work until the job is complete; 
  • Motivation to contribute positively to the COMES at-large community; 
  • Interpret a variety of instructions provided in written or verbal form; 
  • Multi-task efficiently while managing a high-volume workload in a fast-paced, changing environment; 
  • Demonstrate the ability to be creative and think 'outside the box'; 
  • Strong command of communication, writing, and organizational skills; 
  • Ability to work in a busy environment with many distractions; 
  • Excellent driving record and a valid driver's license; 
  • Must be able to successfully pass a comprehensive background check. 
  • Good sense of humor 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn best archival and social practices.
  • Gain experience working with diverse individuals and telling their unique research stories.
  • Organize and inventory digital files and physical archival materials.
  • Gain experience in a fast-paced work environment.
  • Engage and work with research professionals in various fields.  

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: Minimum 30 max 40

Hourly Working Parameters: Weekend field trips and  outreach events are expected to occur but will be infrequent

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Apex Mothers: Using non evasive techniques to study shark moms

Faculty Mentor: James Sulikowski

BES Station: Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment  Station (COMES)

BES Station Location: Newport

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Summer 2024

 

Project Description:

Are you interested in sharks? Join the Coastal Oregon Marine Experiment Station  (COMES)  Big Fish Lab (BFL) research team  where one of their goals is to study the role of shark moms  in ocean ecosystems. In the BFL, you will be primarily working in a controlled laboratory and field setting (i.e. Dr. Sulikowski' laboratory at Oregon State University). Summer work will be focused on learning and using the technique radioimmunoassay  to quantify circulating levels of reproductive hormones in female sharks. Using this technique allows us to determine if a shark is pregnant which allows us to develop management techniques to  protect both mom and her babies from the myriad of assaults they face while in the marine environment.  We  invite candidates to apply who are energetic, enthusiastic, smart, hardworking, dependable and willing to learn. It will be jawsome. 

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Work with the members of lab to quantify shark hormone levels using radioimmunoassay.
  • Data Entry
  • Lab Organization
  • Field gear prep
  • Research Trips to Catch and tag sharks

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

  • Experience with data entry, organization, quality control, and management using spreadsheet software
  • Experience with data analysis in R or similar software
  • Experience working in a laboratory setting 
  • Ability to work in an environment that controls for contamination
  • Experience deploying fishing gear from a vessel
  • Experience Handling large sharks
  • Experience working with potentially hazardous materials
  • Some knowledge of radioimmunoassay technique 
  • A demonstrable commitment to promoting and enhancing diversity
  • Be SciShield Trained

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Proficiency in the use of radioimmunoassay
  • Proficiency in deploying various field gear 
  • Proficiency in organizing, analyzing,  shark hormone data
  • Gain experience working with diverse individuals 
  • Gain experience in a fast-paced work environment.
  • Engage and work with research professionals in various fields.  

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: Minimum 30 max 40

Hourly Working Parameters: Weekend field trips and outreach events are expected to occur

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes.

Creating next-generation controls for fire blight of pear

Faculty Mentor: Joseph DeShields

BES Station: Southern Oregon Research and Extension Center (SOREC)

BES Station Location: Central Point

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Not specified.

 

Project Description:

The bacterium Erwinia amylovora causes fire blight disease on pear and apple which can be especially devastating on trees in the Pacific Northwest. The key symptoms behind pear tree deaths after fire blight infection of flowers and shoots are fire blight cankers. Development of spray programs that prevent infection of E. amylovora is the purpose of this project and the objectives of the project include investigation into the efficacy of fire blight management programs involving Regalia (a plant extract of giant knotweed), antibiofilm enzymes, or various copper/oil combinations. The ultimate goal is to prevent and/or cure these infections which would result in reduce fire blight cankers.  

 

Student Responsibilities:

The student will be responsible for conducting lab and field work related to fire blight management including, but not limited to, data collection, data entry, driving using OSU vehicles, pruning, flagging, labeling, imposing treatments, harvesting fruit, timely communication, and checking inventory. Other responsibilities include attending and discussing experiments in monthly lab meetings, assisting with various lab and field tasks, and writing up a report on the internship research project.

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

The student applicant should be a team player, have experience with the Microsoft Office Suite, and have an interest in laboratory and/or field work.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. A student working on this project should expect to learn how to,
  2. Identify fire blight disease of pear and general symptoms/signs of tree diseases
  3. Collect, enter, and communicate experimental data and results
  4. Manage fire blight and other disease of pear
  5. Conduct and design field trials and fieldwork
  6. Miscellaneous laboratory skills including pressure/ripeness testing of fruit, preparation of culturing media and chemical buffers, managing plant tissue samples, and chemical inventory.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: The student is expected to work between 30 and 40 hours per week.

Hourly Working Parameters: The student is expected to work a typical schedule of 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes

Host plant use patterns of aphids on Potato Virus Y (PVY)- resistant potato varieties

Faculty Mentor: Josephine Antwi

BES Station: Hermiston Agricultural Research & Extension Center (HAREC)

BES Station Location: Hermiston

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: June 3 - August 3

 

Project Description:

Much like many important commodity crops, potatoes are affected by a wide range of insect pests. Insect damage on potatoes range from defoliation, tuber necrosis, to pathogen transmission. Aphids in particular pose a threat to potato health because they are the main vectors of potato diseases, including Potato Virus Y (PVY), that lead to significant yield losses. Development of PVY-resistant potato varieties remains an important crop protection strategy in reducing the spread of PVY. However, knowledge about the mechanisms behind PVY-resistance in potato to aphids are not well-understood. This internship focuses on understanding host use patterns of aphids on PVY-resistant potato varieties. 

Project Objectives:

The intern involved with this project will focus on understanding host plant use patterns of aphids on PVY-resistant potato varieties. The objectives of this project are to: 

  1. Monitor aphid numbers in a potato variety trial in the field.
  2. Count aphid numbers from traps.
  3. Conduct a greenhouse experiment to determine aphid preference for resistant/susceptible potato varieties. 

 

Student Responsibilities:

The internship will be involved in both the field and greenhouse aspects of this project. Field work may last hours and involve physical activities such as walking to the field plots and back to the laboratory, collecting aphids and other insects using nets and other trapping techniques, and sampling plants. It is anticipated that about 30% of the intern’s time will be spent in the field and the remaining time in the laboratory and greenhouse. Laboratory work will consist of insect identification, insect counting, maintaining insect colonies, and entering data into Excel. Greenhouse work will involve planting potatoes, placing aphids on plants, observing aphid plant use (including feeding, reproduction, or mortality), and entering data into Excel. 

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

 Although helpful, no previous experience with insects or plants is necessary. The intern must have a driver’s license.

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

The intern can expect to learn or further develop existing skills in insect sampling methods, insect identification, laboratory techniques (including maintaining insect colonies), setting up greenhouse experiments, data entry and analysis, and presentation skills in the development of their final project.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $18/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 30-40

Hourly Working Parameters: Student may be expected to come in on weekends to check on insect colonies and/or water plants in the greenhouse.

Housing Benefit: HAREC has an on-site housing. Faculty will provide ~$120 in housing benefits per month.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes.

Insect pest monitoring on cultivated crops in the Columbia Basin of Oregon

Faculty Mentor: Josephine Antwi

BES Station: Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center (HAREC)

BES Station Location: Hermiston

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: June 3 - August 30

 

Project Description:

Many crops of economic importance are hosts to a wide range of insect pests that cause crop damage and yield loss. Frequent monitoring of these insects on field crops is important because it enhances early detection of pests and allows growers to take adequate action for pest management. Potatoes and hemp are some of the economically important crops in Oregon. Both crops are affected by a variety of insects. Lepidopteran pests for example, including corn earworms, are serious pests of hemp grown in outdoor production. The corn earworm larvae feeding impact flower and cannabinoid yield production. Potato psyllids, potato tuberworm, beet leafhoppers, and aphids are also serious potato pests that could threaten Oregon´s potato industry. In this internship, the student will have an opportunity to learn:

  1. Insect monitoring and surveying in field crop systems.
  2. Insect identification techniques.
  3. Develop outreach skills by direct interaction with growers.

Project Objectives:

The project objectives are to provide an opportunity for a student to learn pest monitoring and insect pest identification techniques, and field extension network with growers.

 

Student Responsibilities:

  • Traveling in state vehicle for checking insect traps/pheromone lures in hemp and potato fields in Eastern Oregon/Central Oregon. Field work may last hours
  • Counting insects under a microscope
  • Keeping legible field notes
  • Entering data into Excel
  • Comfortable working alone 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

The student should have a driver's license. No prior experience is required for this internship, though it will be a plus if the student has some experience working on insect ecology and biology. 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

From this internship, the student will learn the monitoring and surveying techniques for insect pests on hemp and potatoes, know how to identify common insect pests on hemp and potatoes, and become familiar with hemp and potatoes cropping systems.

 

Student Hourly Salary: $18/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 30-40 hours per week

Hourly Working Parameters: Student is expected work from 8am-5pm. However, there might be some days where the student may be returning from field work after 5pm.

Housing Benefit: HAREC has on-site housing at a subsidized rate if student chooses to stay there. Faculty will provide ~$120 in housing benefits per month.

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? Yes.

Food microbiology research at the Food Innovation Center

Faculty Mentor: Jovana Kovacevic

BES Station: Food Innovation Center (FIC)

BES Station Location: Portland

Project Term Availability: Summer 2024

Specific Duration of Project: Can be up to 20 weeks, starting in Summer 2024.

 

Project Description:

The primary focus of the Food Microbiology Research Laboratory at the Oregon State University- Food Innovation Center is the application of molecular methods and genomics in food safety. In particular, we research how these methods and tools can be used to improve pathogen tracing, to advance our understanding of pathogen behavior and contamination events in the farm-to-fork chain, and to aid the development of targeted interventions.  Foodborne pathogens represent a large economic burden to the food industry and a significant health risk to the general population. The individual selected to work in the lab will assist with food microbiology research projects in our program, including working with Listeria species, and projects related to food safety outreach to food industry.  

 

Student Responsibilities:

Day to day activities may include preparing microbiological media, keeping the lab stocked and clean, assisting in data collection and analyses, and assisting with presentation and manuscript preparation. Student will also be involved in data organization and analyses, creating factsheets, infographics, and other supplemental materials, and attending webinars and writing summaries on topics that are current and relevant to food safety issues.  For this project, the student intern will be expected to spend 35-40 h per week working on the project. The student intern will receive training required to work in a biosafety level 1 and 2 microbiology laboratories, and will be expected to handle potentially pathogenic microorganisms, such as Listeria monocytogenes. The student intern may also be involved in developing and updating standard operating procedures (SOPs), and writing of abstracts/posters for participation in seminars and/or conferences. At the end of the internship, the student will give a presentation of their project to FIC staff, FIC graduate students, and invited guests.   

 

Preferred Skills/Experiences:

Previous microbiology laboratory experience and application of aseptic techniques is preferred.  Experience and interest in bioinformatics, and advanced writing skills are desirable. 

 

Student Learning Outcomes:

By the end of this position, the intern should expect to have gained experience with aseptic technique, preparing microbiological media, using an autoclave, micropipetting, working with microorganisms, and data organization and analyses related to food microbiology and food safety outreach. The intern may also gain experience in scientific writing, preparing extension-style publications, and website design and maintenance. 

 

Student Hourly Salary: $15/hr

Expected Hours/Week: 35 to 40 h per week.

Hourly Working Parameters: 

For lab-based projects, occasionally, the intern may have to come on a weekend to read results, or refrigerate their experiments; however, this will depend on student’s experimental planning and time management. Overall, weekend work is discouraged.

 

Housing Benefit: N/A

Will the student have interaction with minors or access to hazardous chemicals, as student will need to complete a criminal background check? Yes.

Will the student be operating vehicles or farm equipment /machinery, as they will need to submit driving record? No.

For questions and information, contact:

Rachel Jones, CAS Student Engagement Coordinator
Email rachel.jones@oregonstate.edu 
541-737-7410