The College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospherics Sciences at Oregon State University is proud to announce the availability of paid summer undergraduate research internships in geology, oceanography, and atmospheric and climate science.
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 nine week period at CEOAS under the guidance of university scientists, who serve as mentors. The summer REU program runs from June 19 to August 18, 2023. Successful applicants receive paid round-trip travel to Oregon, on-campus housing for the duration of the internship, and a weekly stipend.
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
A directory of potential mentors and undergraduate research areas appears below.
The Summer Program Experience
Students are paired with research mentors in their area of interest and gain experience in research design, data collection and analysis techniques, and interpretation and publication of results. Opportunities abound to gain field and lab experience within individual and related projects, including sea-going experience on OSU’s research vessel, the R/V Oceanus. 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 project presentations.
Program Dates and Benefits
June 19 to August 18, 2023. Paid round-trip travel to Oregon, on-campus housing, and a stipend of $600/week are provided. The program also provides support for student travel to present at national scientific meetings and symposia.
Students pursuing an undergraduate degree at a two or four year college who are not graduating seniors are eligible to apply. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. We are particularly interested in applications from students from groups underrepresented in the earth, ocean, and atmospheric students, and from students attending community college but transferring to a four year school in fall 2023.
Application and Deadline
The online application for summer 2023 will be available December 1 and applications are due February 15, 2023 at 11:59 pm PST. 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:
2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011
The application will ask you to provide the name, title and institution, and contact information for two professional references. Applicants are responsible for contacting their references and asking them to submit their recommendations at this link. Please ensure that your references submit their recommendations by 11:59 pm PST on February 15, 2023 to be included in your application.
APPLICATION REVIEW UPDATE: All applicants will be notified when the selection process has completed. All OCE-funded REU Sites must give students a minimum of March 15th or LATER to accept their offers regardless of the application deadline. In other words, March 15th is the earliest possible deadline for student acceptance (later deadlines are fine).
For more information specific to the CEOAS internships, please contact Kaplan Yalcin. Summer research internships in marine and estuarine science are also available at OSU's Hatfield Marine Science Center. For more information on these internships, visit the Hatfield Marine Science Center website.
Funding for this REU site is provide in by the National Science Foundation’s Division of Ocean Science's located in Alexandria, VA. (NSF OCE-1758000) The NSF contact for this program is Elizabeth Rom. NSF does not handle REU applications; please contact each REU site directly for application information. All students who are offered a position at this REU site have until March 15th or later to accept or reject the offer. This means the earliest any applicant can accept a position is March 15.
Directory of Potential Mentors and Undergraduate Research Areas
2016, Ph.D., Chemical Oceanography, MIT/WHOI
2010, MPhil, Earth Sciences, Cambridge University
2009, B.A., Chemistry, Earth Sciences, Northwestern University
Interests: My research aims to determine how microbes and metals interact in the environment. All of these interactions are governed by organic molecules of biological origin that bind to metals and influence their uptake and transport in the environment. My group combines the development of analytical tools for identifying these organic-metal complexes in the environment with other ‘omics’ to studying their origin, reactivity, and influence on marine ecosystems.
Potential Projects: Develop methods for extracting and analyzing metal species from the ocean. Investigate the microbial processes that dissolve metals in sediments and transport them to overlying surface waters where they drive biological productivity.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in cutting-edge analytical chemistry, curiosity about linking biological processes to global nutrient and metal cycles.
1993, PhD in Chemical Oceanography, MIT/WHOI Joint Program in Oceanography, Woods Hole/Boston, Massachusetts, USA
1988, MS in Geology, University of Montana, USA
1985, BS in Geology, Duke University, Durham, NC USA
Interests: I study the history of greenhouse gases and climate from ice cores, including laboratory measurements and field work. I am the director of the new Center for Oldest Ice Exploration (www.coldex.org).
Potential Projects: Projects could include developing laboratory methods, measurements of methane or carbon dioxide in ice core samples from a variety of time periods, or data synthesis.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in past climate change and biogeochemical cycles. Studies in earth sciences, biology, chemistry or physics.
2012, PhD in geophysics, Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen
2007, MSc in physics, Delft University of Technology, Netherlands
2004, BSc in physics, Delft University of Technology, Netherlands
Interests: My work aims to reconstruct and understand past climate change and atmospheric composition, using deep ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica. I combine ice core measurements, numerical modeling and fieldwork to achieve these goals.
Potential Projects: Ideally a combination of laboratory work and data analysis. Examples could be measuring greenhouse gas concentrations in ice core samples from Greenhouse and Antarctica, analyzing existing data sets to understand the process of bubble trapping in polar ice, or interpreting records of past greenhouse gas variations in a climatic context.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in past climate change, atmospheric composition and the polar regions. A Background in Earth sciences, physics, chemistry or mathematics. Being comfortable with (or interested in learning) numerical data analysis.
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.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Undergraduate students working in my lab have a strong desire to use quantitative and analytical methods in order to make ecological inference.
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, and methods for sampling the earth's subsurface for microorganisms.
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.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Scientific curiosity, familiarity with or interest in learning DNA extraction and bioinformatic techniques, desire to explore the range of environments in which life exists on earth.
Jessica "JC" Creveling
2012, Ph.D., Earth & Planetary Sciences, Harvard University
2006, B.A., Geology (cum laude), Colorado College
Interests: My research aims to refine the timing of the Cambrian 'explosion' of animal life by aligning stable isotope geochemical signals retained in the sedimentary rocks in which these fossils are found.
Potential Projects: The students involved in this REU project will use a computer program to discover the many possible alignments between previously collected geochemical signals from Cambrian fossil localities in Siberia, Australia, China, and Mongolia. We'll work collaboratively to synthesize published geological and paleontological information to help reveal the 'most likely' option for temporal correlation. Finally, we'll explore whether the timing of Cambrian fossil appearances predicted by our alignments represents a fossil organism's true evolutionary origin, or was delayed due to geological reasons. We'll go on virtual field trips to understand our fossil localities but will not conduct geological field work ourselves.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: This is an interdisciplinary problem, and applicants will have an eagerness to apply their curiosity/expertise in one or more of the following––sedimentary geology, paleontology, chemistry (stable isotopes), mathematics (linear algebra, dynamic time warping), and/or computer science (Matlab, R software development)––and to mentor others in the group with less experience in one or more of these topics. No programming skills are necessary to run the software program, but mathematical and computational curiosity is welcome!
Edward (Ed) Dever
1995, Ph.D., Physical Oceanography, MIT-WHOI Joint Program
1989, M.S., Oceanography, Texas A&M University
1987, B.S., Physics, Texas A&M University
Interests: I am a principal investigator and project scientist for the Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) Northeast Pacific Endurance Array and lead the operation and maintenance of coastal ocean moorings, profilers, and gliders off Oregon and Washington. The OOI data include physical oceanographic, chemical, acoustical, and other measures of physical and ecosystem variability. My work focuses on improving these measurements so that they better meet researchers’ needs for accuracy, sampling resolution, reliability, and data access.
Potential Projects: Review of OOI instrument data and comparison to other samples (bottles, shipboard measurements, satellite measurements etc.), exploration of the relationships between physical and biological data over the Oregon and Washington shelves; development of programming tools to help users import, view, and analyze oceanographic and meteorological data
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interests in all aspects of shelf oceanography and ocean data; interests in going to sea and in oceanographic instrumentation; skills in programming (e.g., Python, Matlab)
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.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in geochemistry, oceanography, or climate change. Desire to learn laboratory methods and analytical tools such as laser ablation ICP-MS and IRMS. Experience with Excel, Matlab or R would be beneficial. Learn more about my lab here: jenniferfehrenbacher.weebly.com
1997, Ph.D., Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology, University of Nevada, Reno
1992, M.S., Biological Sciences, Stanford University
1991, B.S., Biological Sciences, Stanford University
Interests: The Oregon Climate Change Research Institute (OCCRI) regularly assesses the state of climate change science, including biological, physical, and social science, as it relates to Oregon and the likely effects of climate change on the state’s natural and human systems. We conduct research on climate-related natural hazards, such as floods and drought, and on climate adaptation in diverse sectors, such as social systems, the built environment, and public health. Much of our work is conducted in collaboration with state and federal agencies, communities, and the private sector.
Potential Projects: Examples of potential projects include assessments of the state of climate science as it relates to regional economic activities such as agriculture, recreation, hunting and fishing, and forestry and to short-term and long-term displacement of human communities. Projects also might relate to media and modes for communication of climate science and its applications to different demographic groups or communities.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Experience with searching, reading, and synthesizing the peer-reviewed literature. Excellent organizational, writing, and verbal communication skills. Fundamental understanding of probability and statistics; programming ability is a bonus. Comfortable with Microsoft Office software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint). Ability to work independently and think creatively. Commitment to justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Ph.D., Remote Sensing, University College London
B.S., Physics, University College London
Potential Projects: We are looking for aspiring polar scientists with backgrounds in physics, mathematics, engineering or earth sciences to participate in a NASA funded project aiming to improve models of sea ice motion which may result in improved understanding of the drivers of recent Arctic sea ice changes. The Arctic Ocean sea ice cover has lost roughly half it’s mass over the last 30 years. This highly mobile and constantly evolving icescape insulates the Arctic Ocean from the atmosphere and radiates the suns energy back to space which, along with seasonal snowpack on adjacent continents and ice caps in Greenland and Antarctica, helps cool the planet. The loss of Arctic sea ice results in a positive feedback and participates in the amplification we see in surface temperature change within the Arctic over the last century. To start this feedback loop there needs to be a trigger, sea ice transport can precondition summer melt. You will investigate how this transport occurs in winter through analysis of sea ice cracking and subsequent deformation. Together with satellite remotely sensed imagery and drifting buoy data you can build a picture of the forces that result in sea ice motion. There is much to investigate, and a variety of projects we can offer ranging from structural analysis of sea ice making use of your geology background, satellite data analysis combined with ice drifting data to identify how sea ice drift responds to wind forcing and collation of these analyses to investigate if sea ice mass loss is impacting sea ice drift.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in the Earth’s polar regions and a background in physics, mathematics, engineering, or earth sciences
2000, Ph.D., Oceanography, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC-San Diego
1991, M.S., Physics, University of Washington
1988, B.A., Physics, Williams College
Interests: Coastal physical oceanography including the study of internal waves and buoyant plumes from rivers; estuarine oceanography including the dynamics that drive the three-dimensional circulation and the mechanisms that transport and disperse water-borne materials in estuaries; physical/biological interactions which influence transport and dispersal of larvae.
Potential Projects: Analyze data to determine the transport of heat by coastal internal waves. Develop numerical tools to study transport and dispersion of water-borne materials by internal waves. Analyze data to quantify transport of sediments in an estuary. Analyze ocean measurements collected from tagged marine birds.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Background and interest in physics. Experience in data analysis using programming/graphics software such as Matlab.
1986, Ph.D., Geology, Columbia University (Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory) New York, NY
1980, M.S., Geology, Columbia University (Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory) New York, NY
1978, B.S., Geology (cum laude), University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Interests: Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology, isotope geochemistry, micropaleontology
Potential Projects: : Around 20,000 years ago, the Columbia River basin and the Salish Sea were both occupied by southern lobes of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet (CIS). As the CIS retreated, there were profound changes in regional hydrology. River discharge carries freshwater diatoms into the ocean where they are preserved in marine sediments. The student involved in this REU project will sail on a 7-day research cruise on the R/V Oceanus from June 7th-13th 2020. They will assist in collection of sediment cores, and will prepare samples for micropaleontological analyses targeting likely flood events down-core. These data will be used to characterize changes in freshwater discharge and identify flood events on the continental margin since the last glacial maximum.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in sea-going field work on a research vessel, appreciation of mud, experience with or an interest in learning about marine micropaleontology, interest in Earth’s past climate.
2000, Ph.D., Physical Oceanography, Oregon State University
1995, M.Sc., Environmental Engineering, Cornell University
1991, B.Sc., Engineering Physics, Queen's University at Kingston, Ont.
Interests: Exploring the physics of ocean turbulence and mixing to understand ocean dynamics using innovative instrumentation, detailed analysis, and dynamical models.
Potential Projects: Deployment of acoustic sensors near a glacier face using robotic boats to listen to the ice melt. The student would sort through some existing acoustic data, prepare equipment for the fieldwork, and hopefully participate in the fieldwork, which will be in the middle of August.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: The successful applicant will have a strong physics, geophysics or engineering background.
2015, Ph.D., Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Climate Science, University of Reading
2011, MPhys (Master of Physics), University of Oxford
Interests: I study how ocean water moves and mixing using computer models. My research ranges from studying small-scale turbulence near the ocean surface, where water interacts with the atmosphere or sea ice, to understanding how massive ocean eddies move water from place to place.
Potential Projects: Mapping the presence of surface waves and their mixing in the Arctic Ocean using satellites. Simulating ocean turbulence & mixing near the surface of polar oceans, particularly in regions of Arctic sea-ice.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in physics, mathematics, earth science, or engineering. Some experience with data analysis and basic analysis software (i.e., Python, MATLAB, R).
1982, Ph.D., Oceanography, Oregon State University
1978, M.S., Oceanography, Oregon State University
1976, B.S., Environmental Science, University of Virginia
Interests: Clare Reimers conducts research in biogeochemistry and chemical oceanography. Her lab group employs novel electrochemical methods to study how oxidation-reduction processes drive the carbon cycle in diverse marine environments. A major focus in recent years has been the use of aquatic eddy covariance methods to assess oxygen consumption rates by the seafloor across the Oregon shelf in all seasons. For another project, electrochemical devices placed across the sediment-water interface are being deployed to harvest low-levels of electricity to power sensors by using natural, continually renewed, chemical resources in sediment and at geochemical seeps as "fuel" and dissolved seawater oxygen as oxidant. This new technology functions like a microbial fuel cell, taking advantage of the voltage gradient that occurs in the top few centimeters of the sediment column.
Potential Projects: Interns working in Reimers lab would be engaged in both field and laboratory aspects of these and other interdisciplinary studies. They would be taught analytical techniques and given the opportunity to collect and interpret data sets that reveal spatial and temporal variation in biogeochemical processes. Students may also have the opportunity to go to sea on a research cruise on an oceanographic research vessel.
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: One of our projects this summer is continuing a study of the major ion composition and chemistry of coastal streams - we are exploring temporal and geographic patterns in several streams along the Oregon coast. The project would involve assisting in collection of water samples, and collection of field data (pH, Conductivity, temperature, salinity, dissolved solids) associated with the samples. We expect that the REU student could develop a project of their own investigating and comparing variability in the data both within and between study sites, and over the course of the diurnal cycle.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in using geospatial technology to detect changes in estuarine ecology
1999, Ph.D., Physics, University of Bern, Switzerland
1996, Diploma Physics, University of Bremen, Germany
Interests: I study Earth’s climate system with a focus on the ocean, its physics (e.g. circulation), biogeochemical cycles (e.g. carbon), and interactions with other components of the climate system (e.g. ice sheets). My work covers both paleoclimate changes, current variability and possible future projections. I develop computer models and use them together with observations and paleoclimate data to better understand the climate system.
Potential Projects: Improving climate models, analyzing climate model output, comparing models and observations, synthesizing and analyzing paleoclimate data
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Good math and physics background required. Interest in the climate system and coding.
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 from both a fundamental Earth Science perspective, and also for practical applications such as harnessing geothermal power, and for protecting critical infrastructure such as the power grid from risk due to interactions between the solar/geoospace environment and the solid Earth below. One area of particular interest is in applying geophysical methods based on electromagnetic principles to image the lithosphere and asthenosphere, to determine its physical and chemical state and to infer its geological history. We also target volcanic systems to study the relationship between deeper magma sources and shallower hydrothermal features. 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 a long-running NSF and NASA funded continental scale magnetotelluric (MT) program to determine the 3-D electrical structure of North America’s crust and mantle 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. We are presently building a new generation of MT instruments and there may be opportunities for REU students to become involved in field deployments in the Pacific Northwest, as well as in laboratory calibrations and testing of new electric and magnetic field sensors.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Background in physics, math, engineering or geology. Interest in field work or laboratory-based sensor development and testing.
2018, Ph.D., Seismology, University of Southern California
2012, M.S., Geophysics, University of the Witwatersrand
2007, B.S. Hons., Geophysics, University of the Witwatersrand
2006, B.S., Physics and Geology, Nelson Mandela University
Interests: Multi-scale multi-physics imaging of the properties and processes within the active North American plate margins. My group focuses on the complementary nature of new and old tools used in geology, geodesy, electrical/electromagnetic geophysics and seismology to provide a more holistic understanding of this dynamic plate boundary and its future behavior.
Potential Projects: (a) Analysis of Large-N seismic array data to constrain fault zone deformation and structure. (b) Electromagnetic imaging of the North American plate margin lithosphere for rock, fluid and mineral interactions. (c) Near-surface monitoring using geodesy and geophysics to inform shallow time-dependent changes in structure, onshore and offshore.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Quantitative data analysis skills with a basic knowledge of computer programming and scripting, a passion to apply these to complex real-world rocks and structures and an inquisitive mind.
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: 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.
Submesoscale Dynamics: Coordinated ship-based and and AUV glider-based surveys of fronts in the ocean. We are studying the finescale interleaving of warm, salty water and cooler, fresher water, focusing on frontal processes that occur in the presence of strong wind-forcing and extremely energetic internal waves (tides or inertial). We have data collected at locations all over the world: Gulf Stream, Taiwan, Vietnam, Gulf of Mexico ...
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in AUV sampling, data analysis, programming (matlab or python), math and physics coursework.
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.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Dr. Shiel is looking for students who are excited about these types of research projects, enjoy spending time both in the lab and the field, have some background in chemistry, and are seeking hands-on experience with analytical techniques, such as ICP-MS.
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: At the end of the last ice age regional sediment supply to the marine environment was dominated by material sourced from drainage of the southern Cordilleran Ice Sheet (CIS). Accumulation of material in the marine environment changed both in character and composition during and after the ice sheet retreat. The student involved in this REU project will sail on a 7-day research cruise on the R/V Oceanus from June7th-13th, 2020. The student will assist in the collection of sediment cores, and collection of physical properties and CT-scan imagery data. These data will be used to generate a basic stratigraphy for recovered cores, informing on how the lithology and depositional environment on the margin has changed since the last glacial maximum.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in sea-going field work on a research vessel, appreciation of mud, experience with or an interest in learning about sedimentary geology, interest in Earth’s past climate and/or magnetic field.
1999, Ph.D., Geochemistry, University of California, Los Angeles
1991, B.S., Geology, California State University, Northridge
Interests: Igneous petrology, isotope geochemistry, electron probe microscopy
Potential Projects: Misti is a major andesitic stratovolcano located in the Central Volcanic Zone of southern Peru. Its cone is the result of effusive lava flows and dome building events punctuated by explosive activity. Over its lifetime, Misti has had a relatively high frequency of explosive eruptions that have produced wide-spread tephra-fall deposits. This project will focus on correlating volcanic deposits from one of its many explosive eruptions on one side of the volcano with a similar deposit in another location on the volcano. The candidate will evaluate the petrography of the tephra deposit including texture, crystal abundance and shapes and proportion of glass, and analyze the major and minor element compositions of those phases in a tephra-fall unit using Oregon State University’s electron microprobe analyzer. These analyses will serve to create in-depth documentation of mineral and glass compositions associated with a distinct tephra-fall deposit and allow the student to correlate the petrography and geochemistry of the materials to another characterized unit.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: The REU candidate will ideally have taken classes in mineralogy, petrology and petrography. It will be important for the candidate to be able to identify different volcanic phases (e.g., plagioclase, amphibole, biotite, pyroxenes) in hand sample and in thin section using a petrographic microscope. The candidate will receive guidance in the use of an electron microprobe for the analysis of various phases in a representative suite of volcanic samples from Misti volcano.
2010, Ph.D., Oceanography, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego
2005, M.S., Marine Science, Moss Landing Marine Labs, CSU-Stanislaus
2001, Marine Biology, Hawaii Pacific University
Interests: My research aims to better understand how the ocean "works" and how this impacts society now and in the future. I do this through a lens of integrating microbial processes with chemical cycles that are important to the earth system, often through exploring the deep-sea and polar regions to better understand the globe's biodiversity.
Potential Projects: Methane seeps are areas where the greenhouse gas methane is released from the seafloor and they are abundant along the US coasts. I am looking for someone to work with my team to better understand the chemistry of these habitats and how that can impact the microbes that can survive and thrive there.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: A student who is excited about better understanding the ocean and looking for experience in chemistry and microbiology.
Maureen (Mo) Walczak
2011, Ph.D., Oceanography, Oregon State University
2006, M.S., Oceanography, University of Washington
2004, B.S., Earth and Space Sciences, University of Washington
2004, B.S., Oceanography, University of Washington
Interests: Application of stable isotopes, trace element ratios, and radiogenic isotopes in marine sediments for palaeoenvironmental reconstructions and sediment depositional histories. Geochemical and paleomagnetic studies of marine sediments. Investigating deglacial changes in meltwater input, stratification, and biogeochemical cycling in high-latitude environments.
Potential Projects: At the last glacial maximum, the Salish Sea was occupied by the Puget Lobe of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet (CIS). Runoff from the southern margin of the ice was routed to the ocean through a now defunct river system. At some point during glacial retreat, the drainage connecting southern Puget Sound to the Pacific was abandoned. The student involved in this REU project will participate on a 7-day research cruise from June 7th-13th 2020. They will assist in collection of marine sediment cores, and will prepare samples for micropaleontological analyses. The student will learn to identify foraminiferal species, and will use those data to characterize environmental changes in the Pacific Ocean associated with the retreat of the adjacent Puget Lobe.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in sea-going field work on a research vessel, appreciation of mud, experience with or an interest in learning about sedimentology and micropaleontology, interest in Earth’s past climate.
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.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Interest in chemistry and method development
2011, Ph.D., Marine Science, University of California Santa Barbara
2005, M.Sc., Oceanography, National Oceanography Centre, UK
2001, B.Sc., Biochemistry, University of Bristol, UK
Interests: I run the Socio-Environmental Analysis (SEA) Lab in CEOAS. Our research uses tools from oceanography, ecology, economics, machine learning and applied math to characterize and understand the complexity and dynamics of socio-environmental systems. We take inspiration from complex adaptive systems generally: our interest extends to financial systems, the vertebrate immune system, housing markets, competitive socio-spatial systems (i.e. sports), and of course ecosystems. We are interested in learning from all these systems to improve our ability to live sustainably. We are interested in hyper-local scales, e.g. how people behave, as well as global scales, in particular how the earth system is changing.
Potential Projects: Predicting illegal fishing from oceanography, characterizing the spatial dominance of international fishing fleets, projecting changing distributions of fishing fleets with climate change, quantifying the emergence of novel marine ecosystems under climate change, designing financial risk management tools for protecting against climate shocks such as marine heat-waves, machine learning algorithms for identifying whales from high resolution satellite imagery, using an Earth System Model to model Mars.
2007, Ph.D., Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington
2007, M.P.A., Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington
2003, M.S., Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington
1998, M.S., Environmental Engineering and Science, Stanford University
1997, B.S., Environmental Engineering, University of Oklahoma
Interests: Large-scale climate and atmospheric dynamics, climate variability and change, atmosphere-ocean-ice interactions, and climate impacts and responses in natural and managed systems.
Potential Projects: A) Novel analyses of North Pacific ocean-atmosphere variability. This project applies new techniques to assess the coupling between ocean and atmosphere over the North Pacific. Physical controls on the evolution of North Pacific variability are incompletely understood, but this variability impacts marine ecosystems as well as downstream climate and weather. B) Atmospheric response(s) to a changing Arctic. Arctic climate change is affecting global climate through the atmosphere. This project seeks to improve our understanding of the atmospheric response by isolating the atmospheric response from the myriad other coupled climate interactions.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: Required: intellectual curiosity in climate dynamics and a particular interest in the research areas and / or potential projects described above. Preferred: some background in atmosphere and / or ocean science and some experience with analytical computing (e.g., Matlab or Python).
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: Physics of nearshore waves and currents, and their role in reshaping ocean coasts through sediment transport. My group develops new techniques to observe the nearshore ocean, 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 assist in data collection and analysis of hydrodynamic and sediment transport processes in the surf zone. Projects for the summer will focus on new processing algorithms for video imagery of breaking waves, which feed into models for coastal evolution during and between coastal storms. You will use/build skills in signal processing, programming (e.g. Matlab, Python, C, Verilog), and photogrammetry.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: The ideal candidate will be interested in physics/math as they apply to environmental sciences, and have some experience with computer programming.
2021, Ph.D., Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, UCLA
Interests: Using theoretical/numerical modeling approaches to understand geophysical flows in the ocean, particularly in polar regions. More specifically, how ocean turbulence drives melting of glaciers. More broadly, geophysical fluid dynamics.
Potential Projects: “How does the ocean disintegrate ice shelves?” - Several floating ice shelves have now collapsed in recent decades with little warning (e.g., Larsen B), but the role of ocean dynamics in driving these abrupt disintegration events is not understood. The undergraduate researcher will use a high resolution ocean circulation model to understand ocean-driven melt dynamics in basal channels and crevasses (weak points below floating ice shelves that come in contact with the ocean) in Greenland and Antarctica. Related projects are also possible such as developing a high resolution model of circulation within ice-shelves, glacial fjords, and near icebergs.
Background/skills sought in an undergraduate: The successful applicant will have a quantitative background and strong passion to learn and conduct research in ocean physics. A background in physics and programming (e.g., Matlab, Python, or equivalent) is preferred.