Forest Undergraduate Research Grant at Faculty of Forestry in Vancouver, BC, Canada
This summer I worked as a research assistant in the Aitken Lab at UBC. I specifically helped Ph.D. student Beth Roskilly and master’s student Judith Nuhu on their experiments with western larch and Douglas-fir, respectively. The two projects had slightly different research objectives, but both were centered around drought and cold-hardiness. Their work is a part of the larger CoAdapTree project, which focuses on assisted gene flow and assisted species migration. I helped collect data on the heights of the trees, bud phenology, fluorescence, and water potentials. I learned a lot not only about the plants we were studying, but also about what it’s like being in a research lab and working with graduate students. I would recommend co-op because I think that getting work experience while in university is extremely valuable, especially if it’s in an area that’s somewhat unfamiliar.