Prospective Students

Undergraduate Students

I am happy to talk with undergraduates that are interested in ecology, evolution, and/or animal behavior, specifically students with specific ideas regarding the project they might like to contribute to. Those students interested in a career directly related to ecology/evolution/behavior will be preferred.  Due to the training involved, a 2-semester commitment and attendance at lab meetings are required. Please send me an email with your 1) CV and 2) a short statement of interest describing why you are interested joining the lab and how joining the lab will contribute to your long-term goals.

Summer undergraduates - Want to join the water anole team?

If you are Native American, Pacific Islander, Alaskan Native, African American, or Hispanic American and attend an LSAMP-member institution, you can apply to join the team through the NSF LSAMP REU program website.  

Graduate Students

**Our lab is currently full - I am not recruiting graduate students for 2024 or 2025**

I am willing to discuss options with exceptional students interested in pursuing MS or PhDs. I use two primary criteria when assessing whether a student will be a good fit in my group: self-motivation (I want to see students who are moving their own research along, not who need a micro-managing supervisor) and independence (I don't expect you to know everything, but you have to have the willingness to "stick your neck out" and learn new things). I will strongly prefer graduate students who come in with a clear direction for their thesis and who have demonstrated the ability to achieve goals. Students with an interest in animal behavior and communication would fit well in our group. Meaningful prior research experience is a must. I do not require students to work on my study systems but, given my own expertise and interests, students that will be a good fit will likely be those working on herps. 

Binghamton University, a part of the State University of New York, is one of the top ranked public universities in New York and is given the highest research activity category by the Carnegie classification system (R1). The Biological Sciences graduate program is highly competitive. PhD (and some MS) students in the Biological Sciences department can be expected to be supported by teaching assistantships, research assistantships, or fellowships. Our department is extremely supportive and the graduate student community is strong. 

Graduate school is a major commitment, and so it is essential that we begin discussions early in the application process. If you are interested in joining my lab as a graduate student, you must contact me directly so we can get to know each other to determine if we are a good fit. Compatibility within my research group and within the department is also a major piece of the puzzle. I expect my graduate students to be contributing members of the Biological Sciences department - e.g. attending discussion groups and seminars - and the scientific community at large. That includes applying for your own funding, attending conferences, publishing papers, networking with other scientists and organizations, and actively thinking about your future career. I will help you to shape your projects and navigate the scientific world to the very best of my ability. To give the best chance to each student I mentor, my personal preference is to keep my lab group small. 

Postdoctoral Scholars

I would consider working with prospective postdoctoral scholars interested in pursuing questions that are of mutual interest. Many national/international programs (e.g., NSF PRFB) provide funding to support postdoctoral researchers, and I would be happy to discuss serving as a sponsor. 

The Swierk Lab is privileged to work on land that constitutes the the traditional territories of the Ho-de-no-sau-nee-ga (Haudenosaunee) and Onundagaonoga (Onondaga) in the USA,
the Tjer-di/Teribe Broram in Costa Rica, and the Maijuna and Kichwa del Río Napo in Perú.