Student Resources

Welcome to the Cal-IPC Student Section

Student Liaisons Amanda Swanson and Marina LaForgia meet with Board Member Laura Pavliscak at the Cal-IPC Symposium

Student Liaisons Amanda Swanson and Marina LaForgia meet with Board Member Laura Pavliscak at the Cal-IPC Symposium

The Cal-IPC Student Section is dedicated to expanding opportunities for students interested in invasive plant research and management. We serve as a voice for students within Cal-IPC and work to connect them with each other as well as with professionals. As a part of Cal-IPC’s mission to protect California’s wildlands from invasive plants now and in the future, we need the next generation of weed warriors to get involved! Whether you’re a current student, recent graduate or early career professional, if you are interested in land management and invasive speices, join our student mailing list to hear about internship opportunities, student funding, and symposium-related events!

Join the Student Mailing List

Most of our events take place at the annual Cal-IPC Symposium. Each year, we organize a variety of networking events including a Career Panel for students to learn more about careers in weed management with representatives from a variety of fields including non-profits, academia, consulting and the government. We also kick off every symposium with a Student Mixer to bring together all the students at the conference.

In addition to these events, there are also various funding opportunities and awards available to our student members. We started offering Student Travel Awards in 2017 to help offset travel and registration fees; we look forward to offering these every year. Students can also compete for cash prizes by participating in the annual Student Paper and Poster contests.

Travel award applications are now open! Student presenters, please download and return the Word doc to apply for financial assistance with travel to and from the 2018 Cal-IPC Symposium. 

Job, Internship, and Funding Resources

Cal-IPC Student Section Job and Internship Board

Looking for research opportunities, seasonal work, internships, or more permanent opportunities in the field of invasive species and restoration? Check out current opportunities across California now on our Job and Internship Board, updated weekly!

Other Useful Resources

  • Texas A & M Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Science Job Board: well-organized and frequently updated job board with seasonal jobs, internships, volunteer opportunities, permanent positions, and graduate student positions across the US and beyond in a variety of ecology, wildlife, and conservation fields
  • San Francisco Bay Joint Venture Job Board: positions located specifically in the SF/Bay region of California
  • Ecolog Listserv: grab bag of position announcements, discussions, event announcements, funding opportunities etc. organized by week
  • Dr. Marissa Baskett’s Grant & Job Resources Webpage: Baskett, a faculty member at UC Davis, maintains this awesome page mainly aimed at academic careers, but with tons of great advice and information about grants, fellowships, and the academic job search
  • ESA Physiological Ecology Job Board: much more than just physiology, includes jobs, internships, and graduate opportunities of all kinds in broad ecology and conservation fields as well as lists of other job sites and tons of other online resources

News & Events

May 2018

Get ready for the 2018 Cal-IPC Symposium!
Do you have a topic to present? Join us in Monterey, November 7 – 10, and share your research. Abstracts are due June 1st. This year the Student Section will be offering Travel Awards to offset costs for attendance as well as monetary awards for top Student Talk and Student Poster. We will also be holding a Student and Early Career Professional Networking Lunch. Check back soon for more details on Student Section events and award deadlines and go to the Symposium page to submit an abstract!

February 2018

Launching Cal-IPC Student Section Job and Internship Board

We just launched a job and internship board full of current opportunities in the fields of invasive species and restoration research and management! We’ll be updating it weekly.

January 2018

New Student Liaison
We welcome Guy Hernandez and Marlee Antill, both Master’s students at Cal Poly Pomona, on board as a Student Liaisons. Look out for us at the upcoming CNPS conference in LA at the end of the month!

October 2017

Cal-IPC Symposium Career Panel

Symposium 2017 Students 1 by Marina LaForgia

Students gather at the 2017 Symposium to review and discuss posters.

For the Career Panel at the 2017 Cal-IPC Symposium, we brought together a stellar group of professionals working for the government, non-profits, and in various academic-related positions. Our panelists included:

  • Heather Schneider, a Rare Plant Biologist at the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden
  • Judy Perkins, the Mojave Desert Native Plant Coordinator at the Bureau of Land Management
  • Travis Bean, the Cooperative Extension Weed Science Specialist at UC Riverside
  • Jutta Burger, the Managing Director of Science and Stewardship at Irvine Ranch Conservancy
  • Jennifer Funk, Associate Professor at Chapman University.

Panelists talked about work-life balance, skills necessary to obtaining a job in their respective organizations, the two-body problem, and the winding path that took them from graduate school into their current careers.

Student Paper and Poster Contest
Congratulations to our 2017 winners and runner-ups:

For a full list of past Student winners, visit the Symposia Awards page.

September 2017

New Student Liaison
We welcome Noah Teller, PhD student at UC Riverside, on board as a Student Liaison. We look forward to working with you to expand our student section!

Student Travel Awards
Congratulations to the first round of student travel award recipients:

  • Karen Tanner, UC Santa Cruz
  • Noah Teller, UC Riverside
  • Brooke Pickett, UC Riverside
  • Monique Silva Crossman, Humboldt State University

Student Liaisons

  • Marina LaForgia, UC Davis, (2014 – Present) – Marina is a PhD candidate in the Andrew Latimer and Susan Harrison Labs at UC Davis. She is interested in interactions between native annual forbs and exotic annual grasses, and how these interactions shift depending on rainfall variability. Current projects include the effects of extreme drought on grassland seed banks, indirect effects of invasive grass competition on population persistence of native forbs under variable climate, and how microbiome structure and function varies by plant host functional traits.
  • Noah Teller, UC Riverside (2017 – Present) – Noah is a PhD student in the Loralee Larios and Travis Bean labs at UC Riverside. He is interested in developing methods for managers to improve species selection in restoration using measurable plant traits. Current projects include postfire revegetation at Chino Hills State Park, testing IPM techniques including mycorrhizal infection and herbicide treatments for Salsola tragus (Russian thistle), and supporting a rapid response effort to the invasion of Oncosiphon piluliferum (Stinknet) in Riverside County.
  • Guy Hernandez, Cal Poly Pomona (2018 – Present) – Guy is pursuing a Master’s of Science in Agriculture, Plant Science option, at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. His graduate thesis is focused on invasive plant species management. Guy hopes to work in a field where he can aid in plant science research to benefit the natural environment.
  • Marlee Antill, Cal Poly Pomona (2018 – Present) – Marlee is a Master’s student at Cal Poly Pomona working in Dr. Erin Questad’s Restoration Ecology lab. Her thesis project involves working in an invaded Coastal Sage Scrub ecosystem to investigate practices to improve reestablishment of native plants from seed in degraded landscapes. She will be exploring the effectiveness of sowing native seeds inside shrub shelters on seed germination and plant survival and growth.

Past Student Liaisons

  • Amanda Swanson, UC Riverside (2016 – 2017), Postdoctoral Researcher at University of Wyoming
  • Justin Valliere, UC Riverside (2014 – 2016), Postdoctoral Researcher at UCLA
  • Bridget Hilbig, UC Riverside (2012 – 2014), Assistant Professor at Weber State University
  • Meghan Skaer Thomasen, UC Davis (2012 – 2014), Resident Ecology, Exotic and Invasive Weeds Research, USDA
  • Kai Palenscar, UC Riverside, US Fish and Wildlife
  • Chelsea Carey, UC Merced, Senior Soil Ecologist for Point Blue
  • Heather Schneider, UC Riverside, Rare Plant Biologist at the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden
  • Sara Jo Dickens, UC Riverside, Ecologist and Science Communicator at Ecology Bridge LLC
  • Mike Bell, UC Riverside, Postdoctoral Researcher at UC Irvine

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