Opportunity Type:

The Marine Biological Laboratory is seeking applicants for two 10-week positions in the Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program sponsored by the National Science Foundation. The successful applicant will work as part of a large-scale, multi-disciplinary project examining the effects of sea-level, climate change, and changes in human land use of the marshes, estuaries and watersheds surrounding Plum Island Sound, MA (http://pie-lter.ecosystems.mbl.edu). Although located off site, students accepted into the REU program must register with the MBL education department so that they can participate in virtual activities with the rest of the MBL community, including other REU scholars.

REU positions are available to U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents only who are currently enrolled as undergraduates at U.S. colleges or universities (no graduating seniors).

REU projects will be drawn from the following areas: microbial processes and communities, sediment dynamics, plant ecology, population and community ecology of invertebrates, fish population size and diet, marsh carbon and nitrogen cycles, and watershed inputs and processing. Students will work closely with mentors to develop and conduct independent projects within these research areas. However, both students will be immersed in an active research environment and will interact with a diversity of knowledgeable wetland scientists conducting research on plant ecology, invertebrate ecology, and biogeochemical cycling. Students are expected to present their findings at MBL’s Young Scientist Symposium in August in Woods Hole. A stipend of $500/week will be provided.

It is our hope that this will be an in-person experience at the PIE-LTER field station in Newbury MA.  In this case housing will be provided free of charge at the field station (shared rooms).  However, if due to covid we cannot accommodate people at the field station please indicate if you would be available for either a virtual REU experience focusing on data analysis, or are local and would like to participate but do not need housing.

Physical Requirements: Ability to work long hours in the field and carry heavy objects over uneven marsh is required.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS: The following items must be uploaded with your application:

-Cover Letter – Which includes your availability for virtual work, if necessary (see above).
-References – Names and contact information of three persons who may be asked to provide letters of reference
-Unofficial Transcripts

NOTE: Please do not ask referees to send unsolicited letters; these will be requested by us for final candidates only.



Applicants should have completed basic coursework in biology, chemistry and ideally ecology or ecosystem studies. Attention to detail and a desire to learn new laboratory and field techniques are essential.


Previous experience with boats is useful but not required.