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Laboratory of Holly Ernest

Opportunities for working with us

Opportunities for working with us

Last updated May 13, 2019

Position openings!



PhD position opening for Fall 2019/January 2020 – click here.  We look for students with a high level of scientific curiosity, strong academic background, and desire to conduct creative ecological genomics and wildlife disease ecology research and study.  Keys to success includes demonstration of strong academic background (excellent GPAs, GREs, etc), background in laboratory genetics, disease biology, and field experience with wild bird/mammal banding/capture, along with ability to work well with others, and interests in research directions of our lab group:

  • Developing and answering important questions in wildlife health, management, and conservation ecology
  • Wildlife genetics, genomics, population health, and disease ecology
  • Applications of genomics combined with disease diagnostic tests, field ecology, natural history, habitat modeling using Geographic Information Systems (GIS), avian population monitoring methods, statistics, and/or wildlife epidemiology methods..
  • Free-ranging Western North America/Wyoming/Rocky Mountain birds; Western North America/Wyoming mammals (see our Projects and Publication pages).

To secure graduate fellowships, students should have excellent academic credentials (high GPA and GRE scores: ~80%-ile or higher), as well as writing, quantitative, and verbal skills. Students should be ready and willing to TA for at least part of their graduate student tenure and write grant proposals (Dr. Ernest will mentor on grant writing and research).  TA means work as teaching assistant for University of Wyoming undergraduate and/or graduate courses.

Learn more about the PhD Program in Ecology at UW.


We enjoy working with undergraduate students in the wildlife DNA and disease ecology lab and often maintain 1-3 positions to provide valuable laboratory experiences. Next openings for undergraduate students will probably be Fall 2019. We look for students willing to commit to working with us for at least 2 years, who have keen interests in genetics for wildlife conservation, and have prior bench genetics research lab experience and strong pipetting skills and good grades in science and math. Contact us at


Veterinary students – check out the Department of Veterinary Sciences/Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory wildlife externships (we may have projects for externs to be involved with part of the time during their externship):

Citizen Science

Are you interested in helping us with research and conservation? Often in Spring, we might be looking for help with our hummingbird research. Visit our hummingbird page to learn more.