PhD Assistantship

Position Title: PhD Assistantship - Atlantic/Shortnose Sturgeon research at the University of Georgia

Location: Athens, GA, with summer fieldwork in Darien, GA

Target Dates for Enrollment: August 2022 or January 2023 (negotiable)

Close Date: July 01, 2022 (applications will be considered as they arrive)

Description: We seek a PhD student to help lead a research team to assess populations of Atlantic and Shortnose Sturgeon in coastal rivers of Georgia. The hired candidate will aim to fill critical knowledge gaps for reproduction and recruitment dynamics through analysis of long-term recruitment data and fin ray microchemistry. The student will sample for juvenile and adult fish during the summer months (Years 1-4) while supervising and mentoring additional MS students and technicians. There will be autonomy in structuring dissertation objectives and ample opportunities to develop exciting side projects. The student will work directly with Drs. Adam Fox (Fox Lab website) and Marty Hamel (Hamel Lab website).

Qualifications: Completed master’s degree in natural resources, ecology, or closely related field before start date and interest in aquatic conservation, river ecology, or marine systems. Candidates should have experience in fish collection techniques, particularly working in large river systems, and interests in R programming, predictive modeling, and scientific communication. The hired candidate must be willing to perform extensive seasonal field work while maintaining a collaborative relationship with peers and project partners. Experience operating and trailering motorboats preferred.

Salary: $24,031/yr and tuition waived

Contact: Email with the subject line “Sturgeon PhD position” to Dr. Marty Hamel ( in a single, merged PDF: (1) brief cover letter describing experiential background, career goals, and project interest; (2) resume/cv; (3) email addresses and phone numbers for three professional references; (4) updated official or unofficial transcripts; and (5) GRE scores (if taken). A hired PhD applicant will eventually submit official transcripts to UGA before admission. We welcome informal inquiries about the position.

Additional information about UGA graduate programs can be found at the University of Georgia Graduate School website and the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources website.

researcher holding an atlantic sturgeon
researcher measuring a gulf sturgeon
technicians preparing to retrieve a gill net from a small skiff
technician measuring water quality
technician holding a juvenile atlantic sturgeon
juvenile atlantic sturgeon on a measuring board
research site on the Altamaha River