Graduate Positions Available

Position: Graduate student(s)

Institution: North Carolina State University, College of Natural Resources, Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources

Description: The Kern group at NC State is looking to fill multiple funded graduate student positions (either MS or PhD, though interest in a PhD is preferred) to conduct highly interdisciplinary and innovative research on complex emergent risks in coupled natural-human systems. Our research is broadly focused, bridging electric power systems and water resource systems analysis, environmental science, and finance/economics.

Graduate students will collaborate with researchers at other universities (UNC-Chapel Hill, UC Davis, UC Merced, Oregon State University, and Cornell) as part of two existing NSF Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water Systems (INFEWS) projects, both of which are focused on connections between water resource systems, irrigated agriculture, and electric power systems along the West Coast of the U.S.

Much of our work is ultimately aimed at supporting real-world decision-making regarding management of/ investment in natural resources and critical infrastructure, and we frequently interact with and collaborate with real stakeholders (e.g,. electric power utilities, water managers). Students will gain modeling and analytical skills and sector-specific knowledge, as well as a professional network spanning academia, government, and the private sector, which collectively can be used to pursue a range of post-graduate employment opportunities.

Requirements: A quantitative background (natural sciences, math, statistics, engineering or economics) is strongly preferred. Applicants should have at least 6 months (or 1 semester) experience in computer programming (e.g., Matlab, Python, R, C++, etc.). Interest in doing computational work is more important than skill (the goal is to get better, but you have to want to). We’re looking for people that will be kind, respectful group members while contributing their own unique perspectives and strengths to the team. Students from under-represented groups (women, minorities) are especially encouraged to apply.

Compensation: For PhD students, 3 years of full tuition and living stipend ($25,000 per year research assistantship) are guaranteed. If support beyond 3 years is required to complete the PhD, the students will work alongside the adviser to acquire additional funding through internal (e.g,. teaching assistantships) and external opportunities (graduate fellowships). For masters students, 2 years of support are guaranteed.

To Apply: If interested, please send an email to Jordan Kern ( with a letter of introduction, CV, and statement of research interests.