USDA-ARS Pollinator Biology and Ecology Fellowship

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Madison, Wisconsin

Job Type Paid Internship
Salary Details The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience.
Deadline May 24, 2024

*Applications are reviewed on a rolling-basis.

ARS Office/Lab and Location: A research opportunity is currently available with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Research Service (ARS), located in Madison, Wisconsin.

The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief scientific in-house research agency with a mission to find solutions to agricultural problems that affect Americans every day from field to table. ARS will deliver cutting-edge, scientific tools and innovative solutions for American farmers, producers, industry, and communities to support the nourishment and well-being of all people; sustain our nation’s agroecosystems and natural resources; and ensure the economic competitiveness and excellence of our agriculture. The vision of the agency is to provide global leadership in agricultural discoveries through scientific excellence.

Research Project: The project will focus on investigations of pollinator biology and ecology. The participant will assist in hands-on research relating to native bee performance as a pollinator. Specifically, we will be measuring the flight potential of various bee species using FlyteMills. These instruments quantify the distance bees can fly and will help characterize how well bees can perform pollination services. This project will involve live bees (not honey bees), so the participant will need to be comfortable observing, handling, and caring for the eggs, larvae, pupae, and adult stages of bees. Learning outcomes will center on aspects of bee biology, the scientific method, data analysis, and presentation of research findings. 

Learning Objectives:  

  • Bee biology (solitary bee development within reeds)
  • Developmental rates as a function of temperature and air pressure
  • The scientific method (articulating a hypothesis, designing an experiment to address it)
  • Data analysis (statistics)
  • Presentation of research findings

Mentor(s): The mentor for this opportunity is Shawn Steffan (shawn.steffan@usda.gov). If you have questions about the nature of the research, please contact the mentor(s).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: June 2024. Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment Length: The appointment will initially be for 9 months, but may be renewed upon recommendation of ARS and is contingent on the availability of funds.

Level of Participation: The appointment is full time.

Participant Stipend: The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience.

Citizenship Requirements: This opportunity is available to U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR), and foreign nationals. Non-U.S. citizen applicants should refer to the Guidelines for Non-U.S. Citizens Details page of the program website for information about the valid immigration statuses that are acceptable for program participation.

ORISE Information: This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and ARS. Participants do not become employees of USDA, ARS, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. Health insurance can be obtained through ORISE.

Questions: Please visit our Program Website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process, please email ORISE.ARS.Midwest@orau.org and include the reference code for this opportunity.


The qualified candidate should be currently pursuing or have received a bachelor's degree in the one of the relevant fields. Degree must have been received within the past year, or anticipated to be received by 6/3/2024.

Preferred skills:

  • Interest and/or experience in entomology, bees, and climate science. 

The application must be completed through Zintellect. https://www.zintellect.com/Opportunity/Details/USDA-ARS-MW-2024-0143

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category Ecology , Wildlife
Tags Entomology