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Multiple M.S. and Ph.D. Assistantships in Aquatic Ecology to begin in August 2022

Expiration Date: 

Dr. Gretchen Rollwagen-Bollens and Dr. Stephen Bollens, Co-Directors of the Aquatic Ecology Lab at Washington State University, Vancouver, WA, USA, have multiple paid positions available for new M.S. and Ph.D. degree students to start in August 2022.

Dr. Rollwagen-Bollens and Dr. Bollens are among a small group of ecologists, economists and engineers at WSU who are collaborating on a new, 4-year interdisciplinary project funded by the National Science Foundation. Our team is investigating the reciprocal feedbacks between dam and reservoir management and ecosystem processes (e.g. greenhouse gas emission, harmful algal blooms and aquatic species invasions) in the Columbia River Basin, and how these environmental and socioeconomic systems interact to affect rule-following, rule-bending and rule-reformulation by dam managers. This new project complements several other on-going areas of grant-funded research in the Aquatic Ecology Lab (see below).

Multiple graduate assistantships are now available to new students who will conduct research related to one of three topic areas in aquatic ecology:

  • Dynamics of harmful cyanobacteria blooms in relation to reservoir conditions (e.g. water level, residence time, etc.) in the Columbia River and major tributaries of the Willamette River. Led by Dr. Rollwagen-Bollens (
  • Ecology and potential impacts of aquatic invasive species (e.g. zooplankton, benthic invertebrates) in relation to reservoir conditions in the Columbia River and major tributaries of the Willamette River. Led by Dr. Bollens (
  • Biology and ecology of native bivalves (i.e. freshwater mussels) in the Columbia River Basin, and potential interactions with invasive bivalves (i.e. Asian clam). Led by Dr. Bollens (

The successful graduate students will be supported on a combination of Research Assistantships and Teaching Assistantships, plus full tuition waivers.

Please visit our website for more information about the lab and our research ( Our group is committed to supporting the professional development of diverse students in aquatic science, with a focus on equity and inclusion in all aspects of our research, collaboration, and mentoring. We welcome applications from students who will contribute to this mission.

Degree programs: M.S. and Ph.D. in Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences.

Deadlines: Priority application deadline is January 10, 2022.

Contact: Please contact Dr. Gretchen Rollwagen-Bollens ( or Dr. Stephen Bollens ( for further information.

Campus and Facilities: Washington State University Vancouver is one of five campuses in the WSU system, and is a rapidly expanding institution located within the greater Portland, OR-Vancouver, WA metropolitan area, near the Columbia River, Cascade Mountains and coastal ocean. The 351-acre campus offers new, state-of-the-art classroom and research facilities, where teaching and research are conducted in an interdisciplinary and collaborative atmosphere. WSU Vancouver is a welcoming campus to faculty, students and staff of all backgrounds, is actively dedicated to equity and diversity, and recipient of the 2019 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award from Insight Into Diversity Magazine.

How to apply: For further information about the graduate programs in Environmental Science, and for instructions on how to apply, please visit the website (

**All interested students should contact Dr. Rollwagen-Bollens or Dr. Bollens before applying.