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click here for more about Archbold Internships

Ideal for students with undergraduate degrees contemplating graduate school

Research in:

  • Conservation Biology
  • Plant Demography
  • Fire Ecology
  • Restoration Ecology
  • and related fields!


Active fire management and detailed history that create opportunities for fire ecology studies. Our long-term (some since 1988) datasets on dozens of scrub plants that give context to short-term, focused, field projects

Interns get: room, breakfasts and lunches, weekly $100 stipend, food allowance.

Interns work: 20 hours per week as research assistants

Independent Project: conducted during remainder of the time.

Duration: 6-10 months

Start dates: flexible

Training Provided:

  • Every aspect of scientific research
  • Project choic
  • Experimental desig
  • Data handling
  • Data analysis
  • Oral presentation
  • manuscript preparation
  • publications in peer-reviewed journals
  • Preparation for: graduate school, agency positions

Applications: send an email to emenges@archbold-station.org with:

  • a letter stating research interests
  • a resume or cv
  • summary of grades
  • arrange to have two letters of recommendation sent to the same email address.


Updated by Eric Menges, May 2012

  • Intern Statistics
  • Number of internships: 110
  • Number of publications from intern research: 56
  • Number of graduate degrees subsequently obtained: 36
  • Number currently in graduate school: 15
  • Number in faculty positions: 12
  • Agencies employing: National Park Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, The Nature Conservancy, State of Wisconsin, USDA, Florida Forest Service, National Audubon Society.

Topics for past intern projects:

Demography, fire ecology, herbivory, pollination, breeding systems, landscape ecology, competition, allelopathy, microhabitat analysis, seed germination, gap dynamics, community ecology, invasive species, disturbance ecology, restoration ecology, seed banks, disease dynamics.


  • Rebecca Ostertag worked on Reproductive effort of woody resprouting shrubs of scrubby flatwoods with time since fire. She published the results in 1994 in Journal of  Vegetation Science. Becky continued on the earn a PhD from the University of Florida and is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Hawaii at Hilo.
  • Jose Luis Hierro was interested in Effects of patches of high fire intensity on shrub regeneration in palmetto-dominated flatwoods which led to a 2002 publication in Florida Scientist. Jose later got a PhD from the University of Montana and has returned to work in his native Argentina at the Universidad Nacional de La Pampa.
  • Owen Boyle was interested in Effects of plant density on pollinator visitation to Hypericum cumulicola. He published his work in 2001 in Florida Scientist and later earned a PhD from the University of Wisconsin. Owen currently works for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources as a Citizen-Based Monitoring Coordinator.
  • Kurt Reinhart asked the pyrogenic question: Can the reintroduction of fire restore fire-suppressed southern ridge sandhill? Which he answered in an article in the 2004 Applied Vegetation Science. He later got a PhD from the University of Montana and is currently working as a research ecologist for the USDA in Miles City, Montana.
  • Karin Kettenring studied Effects of herbivory on reproduction of Liatris ohlingerae (the scrub blazing star) which eventually led to a paper in the Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society (1999). Karin got her PhD from the University of Minnesota and is currently an assistant professor at Utah State University.
  • Martina Petru studied the Effects of experimental disturbances on microsites and plant demography in both the US and the Czech Republic, leading to two publications (one in 2004 in American Midland Naturalist). She later got her PhD from the University of Leipzig. Martina started her own conservation organization in Madagascar
  • Betsey Boughton asked Do ecotones really exist in Florida scrub? A quantitative analysis of vegetation gradients. The answer was published in 2006 in the Journal of Vegetation Science. Betsey later earned her PhD from the University of Central Florida and returned to Archbold as Director of the Buck Island Ranch.
  • Jenny Schafer investigated Where, oh where, does Paronychia chartacea grow? Effects of fire, microhabitat, and gap size.  She later published this work in the 2010 American Midland Naturalist and got a PhD from the University of Florida. Jenny is now a postdoc at Rutgers University.
  • Orou Gande Gaoue traveled to Archbold from Benin to study the Population viability analysis of an endemic Florida scrub mint. This work was published in 2006 in Biological Conservation. Orou continued to get a PhD from the University of Hawaii and, after several postdocs, is now an assistant professor there.
  • Beth Stephens studied Sun and shade leaves in dominant scrub plants and published her results in Botany in 2009. Beth is currently a graduate student at the University of Central Florida.
  • Martha Ellis worked Modeling population dynamics in Florida Ziziphus, publishing her results in 2007 in Endangered Species Research. Martha is currently a graduate student at the University of Montana.
  • Rebecca Hewitt experimented on Allelopathic effects of Ceratiola ericoides (Empetraceae) on germination and survival of six scrub species. This resulted in a publication in Plant Ecology in 2008. Becky is currently a graduate student at the University of Alaska.
  • Tim Miller worked on Location, location, (local) location: microhabitat specialization in eight Florida scrub herbs. He published on a second project on metapopulations dynamics in Florida scrub in Conservation Biology in 2012. Tim is currently a graduate student at the University of California at Santa Cruz.