OBFS Human Diversity Award 2014: Call for Nominations
Wednesday, April 16, 2014 07:41 PM

The OBFS Human Diversity Award provides recognition for unique activities, programs, or approaches (funded or unfunded) that increases the involvement, engagement, and sustainability of underrepresented groups in field science. Broadly speaking, underrepresented groups in field science may include, but are not limited to, ethnic minorities (blacks, Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans, etc.), women, inner-city youth, disadvantaged rural communities, K-12 groups, tribal colleges, community colleges, undergraduate institutions with small programs, and citizen monitoring programs.

Promoting Human Diversity may be accomplished by disseminating materials and using, rearranging, or creating infrastructure to facilitate transitions between the field and classroom. Activities should stimulate both applied and individualized approaches to experiential scientific learning.

We will also recognize stations that demonstrate how retention and application of new scientific concepts are promoted to facilitate further discovery and increase scientific dialog among diverse user groups. This may include a pedagogy for the basic knowledge needed by underrepresented groups to address the current challenges in environmental and natural resources management and research at all educational levels (K-12, undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education).

The nomination deadline is Thursday, May 1, 2014.

Please send nominations to We are looking for self-nominations from stations as well as nominations of activities, programs, and stations that have impressed you regarding their human diversity impact. We strongly encourage resubmissions from past applicants who have not won. Application material deadline is May 15.

Award announcement and application

Please feel free to contact me or any of the OBFS Diversity Committee members with questions regarding the Human Diversity Award. We look forward to your nominations and applications.

In Memoriam: Ray Highsmith
Thursday, March 27, 2014 08:43 AM

Ray Highsmith, Director of the University of Mississippi Field Station, died of pancreatic cancer on July 10, 2013. Ray was also the Executive Director of the National Institute for Undersea Science and Technology at the University of Mississippi, and the Director of the Center for Water and Wetlands Resources.

All three appointments began in 2005. An extremely competent administrator, he was also a national leader in the study of recovery from oil spills, natural oil seeps, and gas hydrates in marine ecosystems, leading efforts in the Gulf of Mexico (the Deepwater Horizon fiasco) and, before that, the Gulf of Alaska.

Ray quickly became a welcome member of the OBFS community, and a staunch champion of the value of field stations for both undergraduate and graduate research and education across all colleges within the University of Mississippi.

He will be missed.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society, 1800 West Main Street, Tupelo, MS 38801.

For additional information, read the University of Mississippi press release and newspaper obituary.

Congressional Visits Day 2014
Sunday, March 09, 2014 02:51 PM


*The Deadline for this Opportunity Has Passed*


Scientists interested in communicating the importance of federal investments in scientific research and education to lawmakers are invited to participate in the Biological and Ecological Sciences Coalition (BESC) Congressional Visits Day in Washington, DC.

This event is an opportunity for scientists to meet with their members of Congress to discuss the importance of federal funding for biological research and education. Event participants advocate for federal investments in biological sciences research, with a primary focus on the National Science Foundation, as well as other federal agencies.

This year’s event will be held on 9-10 April 2014 in Washington, DC. The first day is a training program that will prepare participants for meetings with congressional offices. The second day is spent on Capitol Hill meeting with members of Congress and their staff. There is no cost to participate in this event, but space is limited.

Learn more about the event

Job: Science Policy Exchange Program Coordinator
Monday, March 03, 2014 06:35 PM

The Harvard Forest has a long history of applying forest research to the management and conservation of the New England landscape. In recent years Harvard Forest has built programs that connect science, communication, and policy outreach to strengthen ties between knowledge action through programs such as the Wildlands and Woodlands initiative and the Future Landscape Scenarios Initiative. As an outgrowth of that work, Harvard Forest also helped launch the Science Policy Exchange (the Exchange).

The Exchange is dedicating to increasing the impact of science on conservation and environmental policy. As a consortium, we leverage the research resources of six world-class institutions, four Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) sites, and dozens of participating scientists to confront environmental challenges. We connect scientists with leaders in government, nonprofit, and corporate sectors to define knowledge gaps; we synthesize and translate existing research on timely policy and conservation questions; we undertake strategic outreach and communications to amplify science messages for journalists and decision makers.

We have obtained major foundation funding to launch three strategic initiatives that address critical policy questions in the northeastern United States related to land use, energy impacts, and water sustainability. We seek an energetic and creative person interested in the application of science to policy and management to help lead and coordinate Exchange projects (70%) and to assist with the general development and outreach for the Exchange (30%).

A major focus of this position will be to help coordinate the Landscapes and Resilience Initiative of the Exchange. The initiative consists of three inter-related projects: the landscape scenarios project (led by scientists at the Harvard Forest), the forest pests and pathogens project (led by scientists at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies), and an NSF-funded Research Coordination Network in landscape scenarios, ecosystem services, and linkages to society. 

Program Coordinator Duties
Program Leadership and Coordination (70%)

The Science Policy Exchange Program Coordinator will work under the supervision of the Harvard Forest Science & Policy and Exchange Director to coordinate science and policy activities, including:

  • Design and organize technical workshops with teams of researchers from across New England.
  • Participate in and contribute to scientific working groups.
  • Conduct and synthesize stakeholder interviews.
  • Translate scientific findings into communication products including reports and policy briefs.
  • Develop and execute a policy outreach strategy.
  • Help write annual NSF grant reports.
Science Policy Exchange Development and Outreach (30%)
  • Help pursue grant proposals and write grant reports.
  • Help develop and maintain the Exchange website.
  • Help develop and distribute program updates about the Exchange.

Basic qualifications: 

  • M.S. or Ph.D. in environmental studies, ecology, public policy or  related field
  • Project development and management experience

Additional Qualifications

  • working knowledge of and training in land-use and forest policy
  • excellent written communication skills including proposal-writing and the preparation of published scientific articles
  • proposal-writing experience
  • able to develop and update website and other social media accounts
  • able to make a minimum commitment of 1 year
  • able to travel regionally
  • valid driver’s license and clean driving record

Position Details

  • Full-time, 1-year term position at the Harvard Forest in Petersham MA.
  • Potential exists to extend the position depending on interests, performance, and funding.
  • Excellent benefit package. 
  • Anticipated starting salary $55,000.

Application Process

  • Submit a cover letter, resume and contact information for 3 references to Req. 31939BR at
  • Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.
  • Position to be filled as soon as possible.

Additional Information

Harvard Forest, an internationally recognized center for basic and applied research in ecology, conservation and ecosystem studies, with 40 full-time staff is one of 26 Long Term Ecological Research sites across the country sponsored by the National Science Foundation. The Forest facilities include a research and administrative complex, 3700 acres of land, and residential buildings. The Forest is located in Petersham, a small rural town in north central Massachusetts about 70 miles west of Cambridge.

For more information visit

Asst. Director, James San Jacinto Mountains Reserve
Thursday, February 06, 2014 08:30 AM

Under the general direction of the Reserve Site Director, assists with daily operational aspects of UC Riverside Natural Reserve sites James San Jacinto Mountains Reserve and Oasis de los Osos, including administration and user management, facilities and information systems, biological monitoring, research and educational programs, database management, museum collections, and public outreach activities. Full-time position with benefits.

Minimum Requirements Graduation with BS degree with specialization in biology, botany, zoology, geography or comparable field and one year of experience, and curatorial work or equivalent combination of education and experience. Proven experience in collecting, analyzing and publishing scientific data. Working knowledge of statistical software. Computer experience with word processor, spreadsheet and database operating systems and commonly used office applications (e.g., Word, Excel, FileMaker Pro, PowerPoint, Internet, email). Basic understanding of state and federal agencies and regulatory policies that apply to research and land management issues. Ability to learn names of plants, animals, geological formations, places and basic natural history of area surrounding the reserves. Knowledge of management of museum data collections. Must be able to work independently with little direction. Ability to guide volunteers and others in reserve work. Ability to perform work outside, under adverse weather conditions. Knowledge of basic maintenance techniques for electrical, plumbing, fencing, roads and physical plant. Able to stay overnight at reserve site when necessary.

Must be able to operate and/or willing to operate all kinds of equipment needed to perform duties. Must have a valid California driver's license, and must be able to drive manual transmission vehicles, and tractors. Skills in interpersonal communication and oral presentation. Demonstrated abilities in writing for basic science and general subjects (e .g., articles , letters , brochures).

Preferred Qualifications M.S. degree in biology, botany, zoology, geography or comparable field. Higher education teaching experience. Experience writing science grants. Animal and plant curatorial skills. General knowledge of Arc Infor/ArcView GIS. General knowledge of, or willingness to learn, alternative technologies (e.g. solar power). Basic understanding and experience in trail construction and maintenance. Computer knowledge and experience to develop and manage Reserve website. Previous experience in reserve management. Previous budgetary analysis experience.

For more information, see posting at UC Riverside Jobs

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