Oregon State University

College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences

Summer Research Internships for Undergraduates

REU students at Blue Basin

Oregon State University is proud to announce the availability of paid summer undergraduate research internships in the earth, ocean, and atmospheric sciences. Twelve students will be located at the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences (CEOAS) in Corvallis, and another 12 located at the Hatfield Marine Science Center (HMSC), 60 miles west on the Pacific coast in Newport.

Funded by the National Science Foundation, the Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program offers students the unique opportunity to work on individual research projects, and participate in group field trips, seminars and science colloquia over a 10-week period at CEOAS and HMSC under the guidance of university and research agency scientists, who serve as mentors. The REU program runs from June 19 to August 25, 2017. On-site housing at OSU or HMSC and a weekly stipend ($640/week) are provided.

CEOAS offers a broad range of undergraduate research opportunities and engineering applications in the physics, chemistry, geology, and biology of the Earth, oceans, and atmosphere. CEOAS research areas include ocean ecology, biogeochemistry, geomicrobiology, fisheries oceanography, physical oceanography, autonomous ocean observing, atmospheric science, climate modeling, marine geology, sedimentology, paleoclimatology, and geophysics. We welcome applications from students with backgrounds and interests in any of these areas, including atmospheric science, biochemistry, chemistry, computer science, earth science, engineering, environmental science, mathematics, microbiology, or physics majors.

If you want to apply what you've learned in the classroom to real world problems, then a research experience in the earth, ocean, and atmospheric sciences at CEOAS may be right for you. The earth, ocean, and atmospheric sciences are applied sciences – we draw on knowledge from a variety of academic backgrounds to solve real-world problems. Examples include:

  • development and application of analytical chemistry techniques to parts-per-trillion measurements of individual species in complex solutions;
  • physics of heat and mass transfer in solid and fluid earth materials;
  • exploiting the physics of light to gather information about the oceans remotely;
  • development of computer code to help assimilate and model large observational data sets;
  • design and deployment of remotely operated autonomous sampling platforms in the ocean

While students work independently with their research mentors, there are numerous opportunities to interact with other scientists and students in CEOAS and other departments on the Corvallis campus and at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, through orientation, weekly seminars, group field trips, and final project presentations. A list of potential mentors and undergraduate research areas appears below.

The online application with instructions on how to apply is available on OSU's marine science REU site (both CEOAS [Corvallis] and HSMC [Newport] summer REU positions use the same application). Students pursuing an undergraduate degree at a two or four year college who will not graduate before fall 2016 are eligible to apply. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

On your application list the faculty mentors and Potential Projects that interest you. See the list below. Also browse our listings of past REU projects:

For more information specific to the CEOAS internships, please contact Kaplan Yalcin.

Kim Bernard Kim Bernard
2007, Ph.D., Rhodes University, South Africa
2003, M.S., Rhodes University, South Africa
2001, B.S., Rhodes University, South Africa

Interests:: The primary motivation behind my research is to understand how natural and anthropogenic forces influence plankton community structure and trophic interactions in marine pelagic ecosystems. My research focus is in the area of polar zooplankton ecology.

Potential Projects: The Pacific hake stock ranges from the coast of southern California to British Columbia and supports a major commercial fishery. Pacific hake spawn within the southern California Bight between January and March, and migrate north to coasts off Oregon, Washington and British Columbia during the summer to feed. In the fall, they return to southern California. There is recent evidence, however, of a northward expansion in the spawning grounds and distribution of pre-recruit Pacific hake, resulting in high densities of early-juvenile (Age-0 and Age-1) Pacific hake off the Oregon coast. The implications of this are not yet clear, though it is possible that juvenile Pacific hake will compete for food with the juvenile salmon. The objectives of this study are to identify early-juvenile Pacific hake prey and to determine the energetic quality of different prey types. The research will involve laboratory work, including species identification, dissection of fish under a microscope, caloric content analysis, and data processing and analysis. There is a strong chance that the REU student will also participate in a 2-week research cruise with NOAA to collect samples. Experience working in a lab is not critical, but a willingness to learn and a curiosity for discovery are essential. Attention to detail, the ability to work carefully and methodically, and a patient attitude will all be important.

Anders Carlson Anders Carlson
2007, Post Doc Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
2006, Ph.D. Oregon State University, Geology & Oceanography (minor)
2002, M.S. University of Wisconsin-Madison, Geology
2000, B.A. summa cum laude Augustana College, Geology (honors) & German

Potential Projects: This REU project will be one of three complimentary research projects looking at Columbia River discharge and accumulation of sediment on the Oregon continental margin. The Columbia is the largest river in North America to reach the Pacific Ocean; its drainage basin stretches from the Canadian and U.S. Rocky Mountains through the arid plains, Cascade Mountains, and coast range of Oregon and Washington. The sediments it discharges to the continental margin contain valuable information about the erosive processes occurring in that drainage basin, including changes in glacial activity and flood events. The student involved in this REU project will be supported in participation on a 5-day research cruise on the R/V Oceanus from June 15th-19th. The student will assist in the collection and preliminary processing of these sediment cores on a multi-sensor physical properties track, and will also collect and process x-ray fluorescence elemental data on the sediments. These data will be used to generate a composite stratigraphic section for the core sites as well as to assess and identify the cause of changes in eroded material transported by the Columbia.

Lorenzo Ciannelli Lorenzo Ciannelli
2002, Ph.D., Aquatic Fishery and Sciences, University of Washington
1993, Laureate, Biology, Universita' Degli Studi di Napoli "Federico II", Italy

Interests: My primary research focus is on fisheries oceanography and marine ecosystem ecology. I am interested in studying the causes of temporal and spatial variations of marine populations. Most of my work revolves around early life stages of fish, as variability at the population level is closely linked to egg, larval and juvenile survival in marine organisms. Through these investigations I combine quantitative analyses (i.e., mathematical and statistical modeling) with more field and experimentally oriented approaches.

Potential Projects: My primary research focus is on fisheries oceanography and marine ecology. I study the causes of temporal and spatial variation of marine populations, and the conservation implications of the ensuing findings. Most of the work that we conduct is from data collected by federal management agencies (e.g., NOAA) in sub-arctic and temperate systems in both the North Pacific and the North Atlantic, and involves a fair amount of computational analysis. The goal of these analyses is to gain ecological understanding and provide scientifically sound advice in management and conservation issues. Methods that I use in my research include statistical analyses of long spatio-temporal data series, typically from surveys and other monitoring programs, combined bio-physical modeling for assessing distributions of fish with dispersal life history stages. Undergraduate students working in my lab have a strong desire to use quantitative and analytical methods in order to make ecological inference.

Rick Colwell Rick Colwell
1986, Ph.D., Microbiology, Virginia Tech
1982, M.S., Microbiology, Northern Arizona University
1977, B.A., Biology, Whitman College

Interests: Microbial ecology, subsurface microbiology, geomicrobiology, coupling of microbial rates and processes to physical and chemical parameters in the environment, sensing and monitoring of microbes, methods for sampling the earth's subsurface for microorganisms, bioremediation.

Potential Projects: Our research involves investigating microorganisms in a range of subsurface (shallow and deep Earth) environments. We study microbial diversity and activity in marine or terrestrial settings important for natural processes or where the system is being altered by human activity. We use molecular biology and computational tools to determine the types of cells present, the numbers of cells, their metabolic rates, and how these cells are distributed with respect to physical and chemical properties of different Earth environments.

Simon de Szoeke Simon de Szoeke
2004, Ph.D., Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington
1997, B.A., Physics and Mathematics, University of Oregon Robert D. Clark Honors College

Interests: Clouds and atmosphere-ocean interaction. The large planetary and small turbulent scales that lead to clouds of different types and the radiative effect of clouds on the climate. How clouds interact with the heat stored in the upper ocean. In situ and remote sensing of turbulence and heat, moisture and momentum fluxes.

Potential Projects: I am studying turbulent vertical velocities in clouds measured by a new Doppler cloud radar that was deployed on a ship on the southeastern tropical Pacific Ocean. Marine stratocumulus clouds over this region have an important cooling effect on the climate. The radar measurements allow us to analyze updrafts, downdrafts, and turbulence in the clouds. What do these structures tell us about how the clouds are organized and sustained? Furthermore, I co-curate the Mary's Peak Observatory, a local webcam for imaging clouds and atmospheric flow over Oregon's Coast Range. The observatory web site offers students the opportunity analyze archived imagery, and to interpret their cloud research experience to the public.

Jennifer Fehrenbacher Jennifer Fehrenbacher
2010, Ph.D., University of Chicago, Department of Geophysical Sciences
2003, M.S., University of Chicago, Physical Sciences Division
1997, B.S., Northern Illinois University, Department of Geology

Interests: Tracer oceanography - My research involves components of trace element and stable isotope geochemistry, biomineralization, and marine biology. I develop and use proxies, primarily trace elements in marine calcifiers, for reconstructing ocean circulation, temperature, and chemistry in the past.

Potential Projects: Interested in learning about geochemistry, oceanography, and climate change? Learn how to use analytical tools (laser ablation ICP-MS and IRMS) to analyze the geochemistry of microscopic (sand-sized) marine calcifiers called foraminifera. The geochemistry of foraminifera ('forams' for short) is used to reconstruct ocean temperature and pH (and other environmental parameters). I have samples from several sediment cores and sediment traps that will be analyzed and the data obtained will be correlated to growth conditions. Fieldwork may be possible where you will learn to capture and grow living specimens in controlled laboratory conditions. Experience with Excel, Matlab or R would be beneficial. Learn more about my lab here: jenniferfehrenbacher.weebly.com

Miguel Goni Miguel Goni
1992, Ph.D., Oceanography, University of Washington
1986, B.S., Oceanography, University of Washington

Interests: Marine organic and stable isotope geochemistry. Sources, transport, transformations and fate of organic matter in marine and other aquatic environments. Role of organic matter in global biogeochemical cycles of major elements. Paleoceanographic and paleoclimate applications of organic biomarkers and their isotopic composition.

Potential Projects: Potential projects in Professor Goni's laboratory will be focused around an ongoing interdisciplinary research program designed to understand the cycling of organic matter off the Oregon coast during winter time conditions. The interested student would be involved in the elemental, isotopic and molecular level analysis of particulate and dissolved organic matter samples collected during field campaigns off the Oregon margin. The students will be trained in chemical analytical techniques, the use of analytical instruments and the interpretation of elemental and biomarker data. The students will have the opportunity to evaluate their results within the context of the broader project that involves measurements of biologic productivity and physical oceanographic conditions.

Jim Lerczak Jim Lerczak
2000, Ph.D., Oceanography, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC-San Diego
1991, M.S., Physics, University of Washington
1998, B.A., Physics, Williams College

Interests: Coastal physical oceanography including the study of internal tides, high-frequency internal waves, and circulation in the vicinity of fronts; estuarine oceanography including the dynamics that drive the three-dimensional circulation, the mechanisms that transport and disperse materials within estuaries, and the time response of estuaries to changes in forcing; physical/biological interactions which influence larval dispersal.

Potential Projects: Numerical modeling of the circulation within estuaries to determine how complexity in size and shape of the estuary determines the residence time of materials within the estuary and the exchange between the estuary and the open ocean.

Numerical modeling of the circulation over intertidal flats of a river delta to determine how river flow and tides control the morphology of intertidal flats and channel networks of a river delta.

Study the propagation and shoaling of large amplitude internal waves.

Ricardo Letelier Ricardo Letelier
1994, Ph.D., Oceanography, University of Hawaii at Manoa
1988, B.S., Marine Biology, 1988Universidad de Concepcion, Chile

Interests: Scales of response of marine pelagic microorganisms, populations, and communities to environmental perturbations; the role of these responses on biogeochemical cycles, primary productivity, nitrogen fixation, photosynthesis, chlorophyll passive (solar-induced) fluorescence; and the physical and chemical factors controlling these processes.

Potential Projects: Scales of variability of phytoplankton productivity in the coastal environments; the interpretation of phytoplankton passive fluorescence as measured from space, seasonal, and long-term changes in pelagic community structure in the North Pacific subtropical gyre with emphasis in phytoplankton production.

Phytoplankton scales of variability off the Oregon Coast

Remote Sensing Ocean Optics

Hawaii Ocean Time-series phytoplankton physiology and optics

Coastal Ocean Shelf Transport (COAST)

Jennifer McKay Jennifer McKay
2004, Ph.D., Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of British Columbia
1992, M.S., Geology, University of Western Ontario
1988, B.S., Geology, University of Western Ontario

Interests: The use of stable isotopes and trace metals in paleoceanographic studies; understanding the marine biogeochemistry of silver and the use of silver as a paleoproductivity proxy.

Potential Projects: Marine paleoproductivity and trace metal biogeochemistry.In paleoceanographic studies the concentrations of biogenic materials (e.g., organic carbon, opal, and carbonate, as well as barite) in sediments are commonly used as proxies for marine primary productivity.The first of two REU projects will involve the analysis of various productivity proxies in surface and near-surface sediments collected from off the coast of Oregon, the Equatorial Pacific, and the Arabian Sea. The second REU project will involve the analysis of Ag and a suite of redox-sensitive trace metals (Re, Mo, Cd) in the same suite of cores as the first project. The objective is to improve our understanding of the biogeochemical cycling of Ag, notably determining what environmental conditions lead to the accumulation of Ag in marine sediments.The data from both projects, in conjunction with data from other ongoing studies, will help us determine whether or not sedimentary Ag, can be used as a paleoproductivity proxy.

Alan Mix Alan Mix
1986, Ph.D., Geology, Columbia University, New York, NY
1980, M.S., Geology, Columbia University, New York, NY
1978, B.S., Geology (cum laude), University of Washington, Seattle, WA

Potential Projects: This REU project will be one of three complimentary research projects looking at Columbia River discharge and accumulation of sediment on the Oregon continental margin. The hundreds of dams along the modern Columbia generally modulate seasonal changes in its flow. However very large floods have occurred historically, most recently in 1964, 1948, and 1894, and at the end of the last ice age the river became the conduit for drainage of ice-dammed glacial lake Missoula, inundating the Portland area with an estimated >400 feet of water. Flooding carries fresh water diatoms into the marine environment, where they are preserved in continental margin sediments sometimes hundreds of miles away from the river mouth. The student involved in this REU project will be supported in participation on a 5-day research cruise on the R/V Oceanus from June 15th-19th. The student will assist in the collection of sediment cores, preliminary processing of these sediment cores on a multi-sensor physical properties track, and will prepare samples for micropaleontological analyses down-core, targeting core tops and likely flood events as identified by core lithology. The student will be trained in the identification of diatom and foraminifera species. These data will be used to identify major flood events of the Columbia in the Holocene, providing information on the natural discharge behavior of the river prior to the damming of the 20th century.

Mary Santelmann Mary Santelmann
1988, Ph.D., Ecology, University of Minnesota
1980, M.S., Biology, University of Michigan
1978, B.S., Botany, University of Minnesota

Interests: 1. Ecosystem response to human land use and management practices; use of alternative future scenarios combined with diverse evaluative approaches. 2. Environmental and anthropogenic influences on species composition and species richness in agricultural, urban and wetland ecosystems, including effects of landscape composition and pattern on native biodiversity. 3. Ecology and biogeochemistry of wetlands and riparian systems.

Potential Projects: Sea-level rise is a documented and ongoing result of climate change. Current wetland restoration plans have the potential to be effective for a longer time if managers have accurate location data for existing habitats and can develop an informed understanding of where these habitats may exist under future conditions. The undergraduate on this project would assist in field work to accurately ground-truth edges of the Coos Bay estuary that have been initially delineated using LiDAR. The field work will involve boat surveys as well as surveys from land (where points are accessible from shore). Objectives of the field surveys are to assess the accuracy of LiDAR, identify locations of different estuarine vegetation communities, and to characterize substrate, environmental conditions, and vegetation communities associated with key locations in the estuary that are important as habitat for juvenile salmonid species. The undergraduate will assist the graduate student on the project in conducting the ground-truthing surveys.

Ground truthing will be accomplished using a laser level, digital compass, and high-resolution Algiz Global Positioning System Total Station. In addition, at specified locations, the REU student will help collect data on water depth, temperature, salinity, and substrate (for example, areas where the shoreline is rocky, sandy, marsh, eelgrass beds, lined with rip-rap etc.). These data will be useful in building relationships between environmental conditions and vegetation communities which can then be used to develop species-habitat models for juvenile Pacific salmon.

Andreas Schmittner Andreas Schmittner
1999, Ph.D., Climate & Environmental Physics, University of Bern, Switzerland
1996, Diploma, Physics, University of Bremen, Germany

Interests: Using and developing numerical (computer) models of the Earth'sclimate system in order to understand past and present changes. Interactions between the different components of the climate system such as the ocean, atmosphere, cryosphere and biosphere.

Potential Projects: Mesoscale eddies are a ubiquitous feature of the ocean, contributing to mixing and influencing the larger scale circulation. However, they are too small in size to be resolved in most global ocean circulation models. This project will explore effects of a recently proposed mathematical description (parameterization) of mesoscale eddies in a global ocean circulation model on the large scale circulation, mixing, and tracer distributions. It involves work with computer code, setting up and running a numerical climate model and analyzing the results. This project requires excellent math and physics background and the desire to work with a computer. Programming skills are an advantage but not required.

Adam Schultz Adam Schultz
1986, Ph.D., Geophysics, University of Washington
1995, M.A., Cambridge University (St. Edmund's College)
1979, B.S., Geology, Physics, Mathematics, Brown University

Interests: I study the formation and evolution of the Earth's crust and mantle. One area of particular interest is in applying geophysical methods based on electromagnetic principles to image the continental and seafloor lithosphere and asthenosphere, to determine its physical and chemical state and to infer its geological history. I also study the physical, chemical, and geomicrobiological influences on sea floor hydrothermal processes. This work involves applying and developing geophysical inverse theory, image reconstruction, and time-series analysis to a range of problems, as well as investigating the tectonic, volcanic, solid Earth and oceanic tidal influences on subseafloor hydrology. In addition to working on theoretical and computational problems, my lab is heavily involved in the practical aspects of designing and operating new instruments for terrestrial and seafloor observatory programs.

Potential Projects: I direct NSF's EarthScope/USArray magnetotelluric (MT) program and also lead a number of other field projects employing this electromagnetic imaging method to determine the structure, geologic properties and fluid content of the Earth's crust and mantle. An MT instrument measures the variations over time of the Earth's electric and magnetic fields, which provides information we use to construct 3-D images of the electrical conductivity structure beneath the surface of the investigation area. Each summer field season we also deploy a relocatable array of such stations across large regions of the US, as well as around specific targets of geodynamic interest. As the arrays progress across the country, the data we produce is used to develop increasingly comprehensive images of the electrical conductivity structure of the North American crust and mantle. Conductivity is a very sensitive indicator of the presence of magmatic and aqueous fluids; it is sensitive to the temperature and compositional variations within different regions of the crust and mantle, and it is also an important tool for studying the distribution of volatile compounds within the Earth. We employ both professional and student crew members to install and operate our network of MT instruments. Our magnetotelluric field program will be in high gear from late May-September, so there may be opportunities for undergraduates to participate in this important national program. Extneded periods of field work would be involved.

Kip Shearman Kip Shearman
1999, Ph.D., Oceanography, Oregon State University
1993, B.S., Aeronautical Engineering, University of Colorado

Interests: My research interest is the study of physical processes in coastal ocean. Big, small, long, short, high-frequency, low-frequency, stratified, unstratified, rotating, nonrotating, forced, unforced, surface, bottom, middle - I don't care. If it's physics and coastal, I'm interested. I am most interested in understanding the dynamics of the evolving structure of the density field over the shelf. How it is affected by external forcing and how it in turn affects the circulation within the coastal ocean. My approach is observational, using innovative sampling techniques - such as Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) - coupled with modeling and analysis, to explain fundamental physical processes.

Potential Projects: Submesoscale Dynamics of the South China Sea (SDSCS): Coordinated ship-based and and glider-based surveys of the Kuroshio Branch Current (KBC) south of Taiwan. We are studying the finescale interleaving of warm, salty KBC water and cooler, fresher South China Sea water, focusing on frontal processes that occur in the presence of strong monsoon wind-forcing and extremely energetic internal tide.

LatMix: Autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) gliders, outfitted with turbulent microstructure sensors, are deployed to study mixing at oceanic fronts, including some of the first ever very high resolution observations across the north wall of the Gulf Stream.

Oregon Shelf Glider Endurance Observation: Since 2006, we have maintained a small fleet of AUV gliders operating on the Oregon shelf sampling the temperature, salinity and velocity structure during the entire year.

Alyssa Shiel Alyssa Shiel
2010, Ph.D., Oceanography, University of British Columbia
2003, B.S., Environmental Science, University of Arizona

Interests: sources, transformations, transport, and fate of metals in the environment; natural and disturbed biogeochemical cycles of metals; development of new geochemical tools; environmental archives.

Potential Projects: Potential projects in Dr. Shiel's lab include evaluating the impact of smelter emissions in Washington and British Columbia; determining the impact of trains, including open coal cars, on local metal levels; examining the importance of historic mining operations on environmental mercury and arsenic concentrations; and accessing metal levels and sources in the Columbia River Gorge and other natural areas in the Pacific Northwest. REU students working with Dr. Shiel will gain experience sampling environmental archives, such as lichens and soil, preparing samples for analysis, measuring metal concentrations and isotopic compositions, and interpreting and presenting their results. Dr. Shiel is looking for students who are excited about these types of research projects, have some background in chemistry, and are seeking hands-on experience with analytical techniques, such as ICP-MS.

Joe Stoner Joe Stoner
1995, Ph.D., Resources Minérales, Université du Québec à Montréal
1991, M.S., Geology, University of Florida
1987, B.S., Geology, University of Florida

Interests: Sediments magnetism including paleomagnetism, environmental magnetism, geomagnetism, sedimentology, stratigraphy, paleoclimatology, paleoceanography.

Potential Projects: This REU project will be one of three complimentary research projects looking at Columbia River discharge and accumulation of sediment on the Oregon continental margin. Based on NOAA buoy data, significant winter wave height has been increasing off the Washington/Oregon margin for over 30 years. This should produce a measurable impact on the size of sedimentary material accumulating on the continental shelf, as the bed shear stress produced by larger waves transports larger grains. The student involved in this REU project will be supported in participation on a 5-day research cruise on the R/V Oceanus from June 15th-19th. The student will assist in the collection of sediment cores, preliminary processing of these sediment cores on a multi-sensor physical properties track, and will assess grain size distributions and environmental magnetic data of the sediment down-core. Grain-size and environmental magnetic data will be compared with physical properties data and some low-resolution isotopic data to facilitate stratigraphy. These data will be used to understand the lithologic record preserved and compare the historical period of accumulation with earlier time intervals, with the goal of establishing if the recent change in wave climate is unique or part of a larger cycle potentially acting on the scale of centuries to millennia.

Frank J. Tepley III Frank J. Tepley III
1999, Ph.D., Geochemistry, University of California, Los Angeles
1991, B.S., Geology, 1991 California State University, Northridge

Interests: Use of compositional variations and in situ Sr-isotopes in plagioclase feldspars in arc rocks and mid-ocean ridge basalts to trace the effects of magma mixing and crustal contamination; use of U-series disequilibria (U, Th, Pa, Ra) in whole rocks and minerals to decipher the sources of slab-derived components in arc magmas, and the timescales and character of melting processes within the mantle wedge beneath ocean islands and continental arcs; use of major- and trace-element diffusional profiles in mineral phases to determine the time scales of magma mixing processes occurring in sub-volcanic reservoirs.

Potential Projects: I am working on Mount Jefferson, in the Oregon Cascades, to understand the development and evolution of this magmatic system from mainly basaltic in composition to compositionally variable over the last 4 Ma. To this end, our goal will be to document the petrographic and compositional diversity on the micron to kilometer scale in variously aged eruptive units. This research will focus on the question: what are the characteristics and scale of diversity in individual eruptive units. The research intends to evaluate major and minor element compositions in various mineral phases, such as plagioclase, amphibole, olivine, pyroxene(s), and melt inclusions, through an extensive electron microprobe study. The REU student is expected to be able to identify these phases in thin sections, and will receive guidance in electron microprobe analytical techniques.

Andrew Thurber Andrew Thurber
2010, Ph.D., Oceanography, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego
2005, M.S., Marine Science, Moss Landing Marine Labs, CSU- Stanislaus
2001, B.S., Marine Biology. Hawaii Pacific University

Interests: I am a benthic ecologist broadly interested in the functioning of marine ecosystems, with special emphasis on community and trophic ecology of polar and deep-sea habitat. My research focuses on the role of microbial communities in metazoan (animal) food webs and the implications this has for the cycling of energy and nutrients through sediments.

Potential Projects: The Antarctic is a dynamic place tied to the earth climate and yet much remains unknown about how it functions both as a habitat and in the greater context of the globe. A characteristic feature of the Antarctic Peninsula are Fjord systems, valleys cut by ice that connect the land to the sea and modify the marine processes that together form the vibrant community present there. This summers REU will use a variety of biomarker techniques to unravel the food web in Antarctic Fjord habitats learning a diversity of chemistry, statistical, and graphical techniques along the way. Unfortunately there is no trip to the Antarctic as part of this project.

Anne Tréhu Anne Tréhu
1982, Ph.D., Marine Geophysics, MIT-WHOI Joint program
1975, B.A., Geosciences, Princeton University

Interests: Application of geophysical data to geodynamic processes along plate boundaries; seismic data acquisition and processing.

Potential Projects: I am a seismologist interested in subduction zone earthquakes and their relationship to crustal structure in Cascadia and Chile. During summer 2016, student(s) will work with data from either the recent Cascadia Initiative natural source ocean bottom seismology program or data from a recent controlled source on the continental margin of northern Chile. At least one year of calculus-based physics and math is required. Courses in differential equations and linear algebra and experience programming in Matlab are recommended.

George Waldbusser George Waldbusser
2008, Ph.D., Biological Oceanography, University of Maryland
2002, M.S., Biological Oceanography, University of Connecticut
1999, B.S., Environmental Science, St. John's University, NY

Interests: Ocean Acidification Impacts on Shellfish, and Benthic Ecology and Biogeochemistry.

Potential Projects: Dissolution dynamics of oyster shell in Oregon estuaries. Oyster shell provides critical habitat for recruitment of new individuals to the population. However, little is known about the the lifetime of oyster shell in estuaries and the critical thresholds of population size, recruitment rates, and environmental conditions that ensure that the rate of new shell accretion exceeds loss. The project would entail measuring rates of shell dissolution and quantifying physical and geochemical characteristics of shell material.

Rob Wheatcroft Rob Wheatcroft
1990, Ph.D., Oceanography, University of Washington
1984, M.S., Geology, University of Georgia
1981, B.A., Geology, The College of Wooster

Interests: Interdependence between sedimentological and biological processes in the marine environment; foraging ecology of deposit feeders; continental shelf processes.

Potential Projects: "Blue Carbon" burial in Oregon salt marshes. Research opportunities exist for a student interested in helping determine the burial rates of organic carbon in Oregon estuaries in reference and restored sites.

Angelicque (Angel) White Angelicque (Angel) White
2006, Ph.D., Biological Oceanography, Oregon State University
2001, M.S., Biology, University of Alabama in Huntsville
1998, B.S., Biology, University of Alabama in Huntsville

Interests: Phytoplankton physiology, nitrogen fixation, phosphorus cycling, elemental stoichiometry, hyperspectral absorbance, attenuation and fluorescence, harmful algal blooms, numerical approaches to modeling phytoplankton-mediated processes and utilization of remote sensing tools to explore habitat variability

Potential Projects: Potential Projects for the summer of 2016 include (1) detailed investigation of biogeochemical processes in the water column off the central Oregon coast during fall/winter conditions. This project merges ship-based and autonomous (gliders, buoys and satellites) platforms to gain comprehensive wintertime coverage. Students working on this project would be introduced to optical methods for the determination of carbon and photosynthetic pigments, particle size and color dissolved organic matter as well as incubation based measurements of photosynthetic rates. (2) several projects aimed at development of primary productivity algorithms based on the diel amplitude of oxygen and optically derived carbon; Students working on this project would learn deployment, processing and analysis of optical and remote sensing datasets and (3) regional assessments of the abundance and biogeochemical controls of Vibrio in the California Current system. Students working on this project would assist with field sampling, gene-based quantification of Vibrio and analysis of biogeochemical samples. Depending on the timing and the student, there may be several opportunities to go to sea and participate in sample collection. Students involved in these projects would ideally have some experience or desire to learn Matlab or other coding environments.

Greg Wilson Greg Wilson
2013, Ph.D., Oceanography, Oregon State University
2009, M.S., Oceanography, Oregon State University
2006, B.S., Physics and Computer Science, University of Victoria, Canada

Interests: I study the physics of fluid and sediment dynamics, primarily as it applies to the reshaping of ocean coasts by waves and currents. I'm developing new techniques to make quantitative measurements in the harsh nearshore environment, as well as ways to combine such measurements with models in order to improve understanding and forecasts.

Potential Projects: I'm looking for students with strong quantitative skills and an interest in ocean physics, to participate in one of two potential projects. (1) Using a new/prototype high-resolution acoustic Doppler instrument to run bench-scale experiments on turbulent fluid-sediment dynamics. Results will lay the groundwork for future ocean/flume experiments, although a summer deployment is not certain. (2) Developing UAV ("drone") techniques for measuring waves on beaches. This project would involve building a Video/Lidar/IMU instrument package, and performing test flights at an Oregon beach. Results will be combined with an existing modeling system to estimate nearshore currents, e.g. hazardous rip currents. Students on either project would use/build skills in signal processing (using Matlab), programming (e.g. Arduino), and hands-on design/fabrication of scientific equipment.

David Wrathall David Wrathall
2011, Ph.D., Geography, Kings College London
2005, M.P.A. Master's of Public Administration and Policy, University of Georgia

Interests:: How marginalized people in vulnerable places migrate in order to adapt to climate change impacts

Potential Projects: A student researcher is required for a project on the evolution of a key development in United Nations climate policy, The Warsaw International Mechanism (WIM) on Loss and Damage. This new column of policy joins Mitigation and Adaptation at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as the third column of policy action, and the space in which climate justice concerns will be negotiated by United Nations member states. Among other things, the WIM is where the international community will collectively address the unavoidable consequences of climate change, including sea level rise and resulting migration.The student researcher will read climate policy decisions relating to the Warsaw International Mechanism, and identify, locate, collate and characterize the specific documents referenced in official policy decisions. The student will be invited to participate in analysis of these documents.Basic knowledge of climate change, climate change impacts, and international climate policy is helpful, as is interest in new directions of climate policy. Training in Natural Language Processing is useful but not required.