Fisheries and Wildlife Mentorship Program Homepage


  • Please contact prospective mentors directly to learn more about specific opportunities.
  • Please be sure to read each Message to Prospective Mentees section carefully before applying.
  • Note: Some prospective mentors are advertising research opportunities (Prospective Mentors — Research), whereas others do not have research opportunities and can only provide career advice and aid in the development of professional tools (Prospective Mentors — Non-Research).


Prospective Mentors — Research 

These mentors are actively seeking undergraduates to assist with new and ongoing research activities. These mentors can also assist with the development of professional tools (e.g., CV, resume, application materials) and provide career advice. 


Dawn Barlow

Contact Me

Positions Available: 1-2

Research Specialties: Wildlife science, marine mammals, ecology, conservation  

Research Interests: I am an M.Sc. student in the Geospatial Ecology of Marine Megafauna Lab, supervised by Dr. Leigh Torres ( I am interested in the ecology and conservation of marine mammals, specifically how anthropogenic activity impacts marine mammals and the ecosystems they are part of. My research focuses on ecology, population dynamics, and habitat modeling of blue whales in a highly industrial area of New Zealand. 

Message to Prospective Mentees: I am looking for a student to assist with data processing for a project assessing the health and body condition of blue whales in New Zealand. Specifically, this would involve analysis of images captured via drones to quantitatively assess body condition paired with photos to evaluate skin condition. The student must be willing to come to our research lab at Hatfield Marine Science Center to participate in research, although there is a possibility to split time in Corvallis once trained. I am looking for a student beginning in mid-July, for approximately one month full-time (40 hrs/week) or for eight weeks part-time (20 hrs/week).

Our lab also has opportunities for a student to assist with ongoing photo-identification of blue and gray whales and database management. This is a valuable experience for anyone interested in marine mammal research. This could be a part-time position in summer or fall 2018, and the student must be willing to come to Hatfield Marine Science Center. 


Jennifer Hayduk

Contact Me

Positions Available: 1

Research Specialties: Seagrass community ecology, multi-scale ecology, Pacific Northwest eelgrass food webs, bottom-up and top-down ecological effects

Research Interests: I am a Ph.D. student in Dr. Fiona Tomas Nash’s lab, an am interested in characterizing patterns of eelgrass community structure in Pacific Northwest estuaries across local to regional scales. Currently, I am working on an Oregon Sea Grant-funded project that examines the implications of eutrophication in seagrass systems within and across estuaries in Oregon. This research focuses on the implications of two key processes – herbivory by small epifaunal invertebrates and nutrient enrichment – on the distribution of eelgrass and the relationships among eelgrass and its competitors – macroalgae and epiphytic microalgae.

Message to Prospective Mentees: I am looking for a student to assist with research (preparing samples, identifying and sorting organisms, observational fieldwork) who has an interest in community ecology as well as a desire to gain experience in field and lab methodology. This work could start immediately and can continue through next fall. The time commitment would be something like 3-6 hours per week. I prefer the student either travel to or better yet be based at Newport, but lab work can be done in Corvallis. Fieldwork would involve travel to Newport and/or other estuaries on the Oregon Coast. I enjoy mentoring students and would be happy to help set up an independent research project relating to this work. I am also happy to offer advice about careers, grad school, and life beyond academia.


Lauren Zatkos

Contact Me

Positions Available: 3

Research Specialties: Fisheries Science, Freshwater ecosystems, Stream ecology, Freshwater Fishes, Amphibians, Food webs, Aquatic Invertebrates.

Research Interests: I am a Master’s student working in Ivan Arismendi’s lab and am interested in freshwater fishes, stream ecology, and climate change. My thesis research will focus on the diets and interactions of coastal cutthroat trout and the Pacific giant salamander. As the top aquatic predators in most headwater streams in the Pacific Northwest, these species play a substantial role in regulating the food web in their ecosystems. Specifically, this project will address the range differences of the coastal cutthroat trout and the Pacific giant salamander, as well as intraguild competition and habitat use. 

Message to Prospective Mentees: This is an opportunity for students interested in fisheries and/or stream ecology to assist me in field research or analysis of aquatic invertebrates in a lab setting. I am looking to fill two field research positions, which will involve extensive electrofishing, PIT tagging and collecting diet samples from fish and salamanders. These two students who join my team will assist me from July – August 2018 and will be provided housing at the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest in Blue River, OR. There will be an option to leave the field station most weekends. The second position offered is for a student interested in aquatic invertebrates and lab work. This will involve the identification of aquatic invertebrates to an order level and meticulous data recording. Any student interested will conduct this work early during Fall term 2018. The hours per week involved with this activity can be discussed and the schedule is flexible. All students that join my team will be welcome to ask me questions about further research, graduate school, and career paths. 











Prospective Mentors — Non-research

These mentors do not currently have research opportunities but are available to provide assistance with the development of professional tools (e.g., CV, resume, application materials) and career advice.

Matthew Kaylor

Contact Me

Positions Available: 1

Research Specialties: Fisheries Science, Stream Ecology, Riparian Forests, Primary Production, Salmonids

Research Interests: Broadly, my research is focused on factors limiting the growth and abundance of juvenile salmonids and resident trout. More specifically, I am interested in how nutrients and light availability can promote greater primary production and heterotrophic production and how this, in turn, can resonate through food webs ultimately influencing fish and invertebrates. My first two years were focused on light availability in western Oregon streams but my current projects are now focusing on nutrient effects in Eastern Oregon.  

Message to Prospective Mentees: I do not currently have any research opportunities. I am happy to serve as a mentor to any undergraduate looking for advice. If you are interested, let's grab a coffee and discuss your interests and how to best proceed.

Christina Murphy

Contact Me

Positions Available: 1

Research Specialties: Fisheries Science, Fish, Ecology, Limnology, Food Webs

Research Interests: My research focuses on freshwater ecology and hydrological alteration. I work on Willamette Basin Reservoirs examining how different drawdown scenarios change food webs (including fish, macroinvertebrates, and zooplankton) and water quality.

Message to Prospective Mentees: I currently am not seeking a mentee to assist with research, but am happy to work with a mentee on career development and materials. I have experience finding research and funding opportunities at home and abroad and I love working with highly motivated students. In Spring 2017, I see the potential for a reservoir phytoplankton identification offshoot project that could be an independent project for a mentee. For student projects, I prefer to get you started and regularly check-in, but I don't envision constant supervision (drive, independence, reliability, care with samples, and attention to detail are all important traits you should possess).

Steve Whitlock

Contact Me

Positions Available: 1

Research Specialties: Fisheries Science, Natural resource management, Conservation biology, Statistical analysis, Decision analysis, Freshwater fish ecology 

Research Interests: I'm a Ph.D. student in Dr. Jim Peterson’s lab. My research is focused on developing an integrative decision tool for Glacier Bay National Park, which will allow the park to minimize negative interactions between wildlife and vessels, especially cruise ships. Prior to beginning my research assistantship, I studied kokanee salmon in Idaho and Pacific lamprey in Oregon. I’m not particular about the taxa that I work on, what I enjoy about ecological research is understanding and characterizing uncertainty in natural systems and in natural resource decision processes.

Message to Prospective Mentees: I currently do not have any research opportunities. However, I have navigated the challenges of finding work and graduate programs after completing a BS and can offer guidance related to finding employment opportunities and preparing application materials. A great way to stick out as a graduate school applicant is to work on an independent research project as an undergraduate. I would be happy to suggest projects or provide support for students who are interested in this kind of opportunity.

Linsey Arnold

Contact Me 

Positions Available: 1

Research Specialties: Fisheries Science, Population dynamics, maternal effects, fisheries, modeling

Research Interests: My research concerns the intersection of reproductive biology and population dynamics in a long-lived rockfish species experiencing fishing pressure and a highly variable environment. Questions my research address include the impact of age-dependent reproductive strategies on recruitment variability, the impact of these strategies on stock assessment estimates of population productivity, and the implications for management.

Message to Prospective Mentees: There is no lab or field component to my research. I can best serve students interested in modeling population dynamics, particularly marine fisheries, but the methods apply to the terrestrial realm as well. I also welcome students interested in resource management, my expertise lies in the management of marine fisheries. I have at least one project that a motivated student could join with the possibility of authorship on a publication. Otherwise, I am happy to provide any help or support that I can concerning coursework, life after undergrad, graduate school, funding, leaving academia, coming back to academia, and so on. I’ve had a variety of jobs outside of academia, and a variety of majors within academia, I understand the non-traditional student and can provide support to those in transition. 

Peter Kappes

Contact Me

Positions Available: 2

Research Specialties: Wildlife Science, Birds, Conservation Biology, Population dynamics/modeling, Island Ecosystems

Research Interests: I'm particularly interested in research questions that have direct management applications and can be used to inform management scenarios of at-risk populations. I work predominately with marine birds, focusing on population dynamics and modeling and the role marine birds play in island ecosystems. 

Message to Prospective Mentees: I do not have any research opportunities at this time. I have over 20 years of field experience including positions with academic institutions, state, and federal agencies, as well as private consulting firms. I have hired, trained, and supervised students and technicians, and am looking forward to using those experiences to advise undergraduates as they make the jump from undergraduate work to graduate school and/or employment. I also received my MS abroad and have lived and worked abroad, so if you're entertaining the thought of working or going to grad school outside of the US I can help identify potential funding options and help weigh the pros and cons of obtaining a degree at a foreign institution.









Current Mentors

These mentors are currently mentoring undergraduates, but are not actively seeking new mentees. If your research interests align with those of the mentors below, please contact them directly to inquire about possible future research opportunities.

Ryan Baumbusch

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Wildlife Science, Population Ecology, Conservation Biology, Forest Ecology, Quantitative Ecology

Research Interests: I am a Ph.D. student in Katie Dugger's Lab. I am working on a large, federally run experiment where barred owls are being lethally removed to assess the impact this may have as a conservation action for northern spotted owls. My research focuses on the community level effects that result from barred owls supplanting spotted owls in the Pacific Northwest. Most of my prior experience, including my master's research, has centered on northern spotted owl conservation and the threats that barred owls now pose. More broadly, I am interested in using population demography to answer both basic and applied ecological questions in relation to the conservation of terrestrial vertebrates.


Selene Fregosi

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Wildlife Science, Mammals (marine), Acoustics, Technology, Ecology

Research Interests: I use novel autonomous passive acoustic platforms (robots!) to study the ecology of vocal animals. Basically, I listen for whales and identify where/when specific species are found to study their spatial and temporal distributions. My real passion is using new technologies in bioacoustics as a research tool to study behavioral ecology and sensory biology. Check out my web page:


Brent Barry

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Wildlife Science, Carnivores, metapopulations, noninvasive survey techniques

Research Interests: My research interests are in carnivore populations, particularly mustelids. I am a master's student in Taal Levi's lab and focus on methods of multispecies carnivore surveys in southern Oregon with an emphasis on fisher distributions.   


Tyler Hallman

Contact Me 

Research Specialties: Wildlife Science, Avian Ecology, Birds, GIS, Citizen Science, Database

Research Interests: I conduct surveys of the birds in the Willamette Valley in an effort to estimate their current populations and changes in populations since Euro-American settlement in the 1850s. 


Brittany Schwartzkopf

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Fisheries Science, Fish, diet, feeding ecology, stable isotopes

Research Interests: I am a Ph.D. student in Scott Heppell's lab and my research focuses on juvenile rockfish life history traits in Oregon's estuaries. The life history traits I will be looking at include age and growth, diet, stable isotope analysis, and otolith microchemistry. I will be comparing these life history traits between different estuaries as well as between eelgrass habitats and dock habitats within each estuary. 


Matthew Ramirez

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Marine ecology, Sea turtles, Population dynamics, Chemical analyses, Conservation biology

Research Interests: I am a doctoral candidate in Selina Heppell's lab. My research is currently focused on the reconstruction of sea turtle life history using multiple chemical approaches performed on their bones, which contain records of age, growth, and past habitat use and diet. This research provides important insight into cryptic life stages of these species and will ultimately be used to better parameterize population models for management and conservation. You can learn more about me and my research on my website:


Samara Haver

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Wildlife Science, Passive acoustics, bioacoustics, anthropogenic impacts, conservation policy

Research Interests: I am a Ph.D. student in wildlife science and I work within the Cooperative Institute for Marine Resources Studies at Hatfield. I am broadly interested in marine protection and conservation, particularly for marine mammals. Currently, I am researching the impact of noise on the marine environment. For my dissertation research, I am comparing deep and shallow-water soundscapes throughout US waters. I use passive acoustic data to compare biological, geophysical, and anthropogenic sound sources. 


Dave Roon

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Fisheries Science, Freshwater ecosystems, Stream-riparian food webs, stream fishes, stream amphibians

Research Interests: I'm a Ph.D. student working with Jason Dunham at USGS. I'm interested in how freshwater ecosystems respond to changing riparian forest conditions. My research takes place in headwater streams in the redwoods of Northern California and evaluates the effects of experimental riparian thinning treatments on stream temperature and macroinvertebrate prey resources that support stream fish and amphibians. 


Jane Dolliver

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Wildlife Science, Conservation Biology, Seabirds, Forage Fish

Research Interests: As an MS student part of the Rob Suryan's Seabird Oceanography Lab, I monitor Oregon's largest colony of common murres (a penguin-like marine bird) at Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, in Newport, OR. In addition to ongoing monitoring of top-down (eagle disturbance) and bottom-up (prey availability) effects on this breeding colony, we're interested in collecting data on colony attendance, reproductive timing and murre chick feeding rates.


Nicholas Hahlbeck

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Fish, Ecology, Temperature, Movement, Life history

Research Interests: I am studying various aspects of redband trout life history in the Upper Klamath Basin, OR to understand how these fish have behaviorally adapted to adverse mean conditions across space and time. As the Klamath system looks similar to other systems' futures under climate change, my research aims to determine how warming waters might fit into the life history and ecology of coldwater fish like trout.


Alex Jensen

Contact Me

Research Specialties: Fisheries science, stock identification, stock assessment, fishery management, and policy

Research Interests: I am a Ph.D. student working with Jim Peterson and Carl Schreck, and I’m primarily interested in conducting fisheries research that informs management.  My Ph.D. work focuses on developing new stock assessment tools and evaluating management frameworks for the fall-run Chinook salmon fishery at the mouth of the Columbia River.