Biology Department

Research Opportunities

Union students conducting grasshopper research

Research at Union

There are many research opportunities available for Union biology majors.

Check out Union Undergraduate Research website for more detailed information on how to get involved.

(Any individual using laboratory animals in teaching and/or research at Union must have an Animal Care and Use Protocol form completed, approved and on file with IACUC).

Summer opportunities 

**Deadline for Student summer applications: 11 p.m, Thursday, February 14, 2019

(Deadline for faculty letters of support: 11 p.m.  Friday, February 15, 2019)**

Off campus research opportunities

  • 2019 Fall Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS): Application Deadline is May 31st

    The Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS) has received funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF), for the Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program ( to support internships for undergraduate student research at BIOS during fall 2019 (students will arrive August 25 and depart November 16).

    *Application deadline is May 31st, 2019*

    An REU internship at BIOS is an ideal way to gain the experience necessary to embark on graduate studies or careers in oceanography and the marine and atmospheric sciences. REU interns will carry out an independent research project under the expert supervision of BIOS scientists and undertake training in scientific communication, research methods and ethics, and career development. You will give presentations about your research to your peers and colleagues at BIOS. Our program offers the opportunity to take part in various field excursions to learn about Bermuda's natural history, and all students will have the opportunity to participate in an oceanographic research cruise aboard our research vessel R/V Atlantic Explorer.

    Funding includes return air travel to Bermuda, accommodation and meals. Each successful REU applicant will also receive a competitive stipend.

    This program provides recipients with the opportunity to design and conduct intensive, hands-on research projects - under faculty supervision and mentorship, within several research areas including:

    •  Biology, chemistry, and physics of the open ocean
    •  Biology, physiology, and biochemistry of reef building corals and reef ecosystems
    • Molecular biology of marine organisms
    • Environmental chemistry of Bermuda's atmosphere and inshore waters
    • Effects and consequences of global environmental change

    Further information on the REU program at BIOS can be found here (, including eligibility, application instructions, online application form, past student testimonials and details of the potential projects that students may apply to work on in 2019. 

    Applicants must meet the following criteria:

    • Completed at least one year of undergraduate study
    • Will still be enrolled as an undergraduate in the fall of 2019
    • U.S. citizen or permanent resident         

    We urge all successful applicants to arrange for independent study credit through their home institutions. Underrepresented groups, and students attending colleges or universities where research opportunities in STEM are limited, are especially encouraged to apply. Applicants are ineligible if they have participated in a prior NSF-funded REU in Ocean Sciences

    Please contact us for additional information on the BIOS REU program or other BIOS education programs at

  • Friends of Recreation, Conservation and Environmental Stewardship (FORCES)

    Mission & Program Goals

    Engage New York State college students to simultaneously improve OPRHP resources and enrich student academic, recreational and career opportunities.

    Primary Program Goals

    • Harness student expertise, volunteer and service efforts to create meaningful park and natural resource improvement projects and to enhance patron experience.
    • Support and nurture the interest of college students in environmental conservation, recreation and historic preservation activities and careers.
    • Increase awareness of, and engagement with New York State parks among college students and college communities.

    Benefits of getting involved:

    • Gain experience in the field of your choice
    • Make connections with New York State Park employees
    • Enhance your resume with notable skills and experience
    • Try a variety of projects and fields to find out what you like
    • Fill internship or volunteer requirements while doing something you love
    • Help protect the beauty and biodiversity of New York State Parks by acquiring and sharing unique knowledge and skills

    For current project opportunities, click here. 

  • NSF Forest Ecology REU assistantship in the Northern Rockies: Application due April 8th

    We are seeking one paid Research Experience for Undergraduate (REU) intern for summer 2019 to study Forest Ecosystem Ecology in the Northern Rockies. This National Science Foundation REU opportunity provides 11 weeks of funding ($500 stipend/week) as well as a housing stipend ($22/day). The project offers ample opportunities for an undergraduate to develop a field research project and pursue a senior-thesis while building the necessary foundation for a career in ecological research.

    Requirements: Minimum GPA of 3.0; significant interest in forest ecology, field research, and the outdoors; ability to hike off-trail and work long days outside; interest in learning and applying new research techniques to work both with a team and independently; strong work ethic, self-motivated, and critical thinking skills. The schedule can be flexible to allow for summer travel plans but must be able to complete 11 weeks of full-time work between May 1 and October 1, 2019. Participants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and currently enrolled as an undergraduate student. Students with backgrounds that are underrepresented in forest science are encouraged to apply.

    Application: Please submit a cover letter (detailing your interest, relevant experience and skills, and summer availability), resume, academic transcripts (unofficial fine), and 1-2 letters of recommendation (minimum one from an academic faculty member familiar with your work) to Dr. Tara Hudiburg ( ). Application deadline extended to April 8th, 2019. 

    The intern will be working with the Idaho Terrestrial Ecosystem Analysis and Modeling group (ITEAM). Our research group studies shifting relationships between western forest ecosystems, climate change, policy decisions, and natural and anthropogenic disturbances. Our current projects explore the use of automated and traditional ecosystem carbon and water flux measurements across Rocky Mountain field sites to better understand forest responses to shifting drought and fire regimes. We use measurements to improve ecosystem modeling of past, present, and future conditions across site to west-wide scales to better inform critical management policies. 

    During the summer of 2019, the REU intern will assist the ITEAM lab with field work at local and regional sites (Northern Idaho), lab analysis, and data management. The REU intern will learn cutting edge field techniques to measure forest vegetation and soil stocks and fluxes. Fieldwork will involve hiking and carrying heavy equipment off-trail as well as long days outside, occasionally in inclement conditions. The student will learn database usage, statistical/spatial analyses, and will have the opportunity to communicate research findings in both oral and written forms.

    Through this hands-on experience, the REU student will develop and implement an independent research project associated with the lab's field research. There are many opportunities to develop an independent project with ITEAM members from both previously collected and upcoming 2019 field season data. The student will have 11 weeks of full-time (40 hours/week) participation in the summer of 2019. For students attending U. Idaho, there is a possibility to continue their independent research with the ITEAM lab in the fall 2019 semester.

    This position is located in Moscow, ID, which is a small college town on the Idaho/Washington border. Moscow serves as a base camp for outdoor recreation opportunities in the Northern Rockies, with the Salmon River, the Wallowa Mountains, the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, and Hells Canyon all within a few hours. Housing in Moscow is very affordable, and sublets are plentiful during the summer months. 

    For more information about our lab group, visit our website: