There are opportunities for undergraduate students to join the WERG group!
Since WERG came to NDSU, we have welcomed interested and enthusiastic undergraduates into the lab for a variety of activites. We like to have a fun and busy laboratory and fieldwork experience.
Some activites our undergrads have enjoyed:
- assist graduate students and professors with their work
- learn data and statistical analysis
- sort and process water, soil, or plant samples (grinding, liquid nitrogen)
- identify wetland and aquatic plant species
- learn microwave digestion techniques (weighing samples, dissolving in nitric acid)
- perform pH, conductivity, and redox potential measurements
- become familiar with ICP-OES analysis
- learn proper laboratory safety and procedures
- design and carry out a research project
- present a poster at a scientific meeting
- collect samples during fieldwork
- canoeing, hiking, map reading and GPS, traveling, enjoying nature
- joining the group for get-togethers and regular laboratory meetings
Your potential benefits from this experience:
- Students typically volunteer at first one to two hours a week during the semester, and most receive a credit for independent study. Some students have spent their time as work-study. There are opportunities for the more experienced students to work on their own research project. There aslo may be opportunities to earn some money as fieldwork assistants during the summer.
- You can learn a lot about ecological research and build experience for your resume
- You can get to know the graduate students and learn about their research and experiences
- You might ask for letters of reference from the supervisors
- Some of the undergraduate volunteers have become graduate students in WERG
Our potential benefits from this experience:
- We have some extra hands in the lab
- Graduate students have much needed help during fieldwork
- Graduates get the opportunity to supervise and mentor students
- The more the merrier!
Here's what you need to do:
- Think about your interest in ecology research - do you like soil and mud? Do you like plants, bugs, amphibians? are you interested in metal analysis, pH, etc?
- Email Marinus Otte to tour the lab and talk about opportunities. You can also stop in any time to 207 Stevens Hall.
- Once you've decided to join us, you will need to complete some safety training before you can work in the lab. You need to take TWO on-line training sessions: the Baseline Safety training and the Laboratory Safety training (modules 1-6). Print the quizzes, fill in the answers after reviewing the presentations, enter Donna Jacob's name as the supervisor, and send it to the NDSU University Police and Safety Office. After one or two weeks, your corrected test will arrive in the lab and you can begin.