The Subtropical Horticulture Research Station (SHRS) located in Miami, Florida has a significant commitment to the mentorship of potential future scientists for agriculture with special emphasis in diversity. Scientific expertise at SHRS includes plant genetics, hydrology, agronomy, chemistry and entomology. Fields of study include research on tropical fruit and ornamental genetics; hydrology and agronomy research related to water and fertilizer runoff from containerized plants; and entomology and chemistry research to development of environmentally safe, biorational approaches to insect pest detection and suppression.
SAA Summer Intern/Apprentice Program is a summer eight-week program that provides paid or volunteer internship opportunities for both laboratory and field projects at SHRS. Examples of projects offered previously include:
1) collection of data on tropical fruit (e.g., mango, banana) such as measurement of fruit size, color, shape, and brix, using instruments such as colorimeter and brix meter; 2) trapping studies with protein-based baits and lures to test attraction of pest fruit flies that attack guava and loquat; 3) analyzing materials for their potential use as a potting substrate and monitoring developmental characteristics of plants grown in different potting materials; 4) measuring water use efficiency of different greenhouse water management systems.
USDA Junior Agricultural Ambassador Program includes a summer seven-week research project at SHRS and a one-week workshop in Washington, D.C. for high school students. Students have the opportunity for a paid internship under the guidance of an SHRS scientist and they visit Washington, D.C. to learn more about what each agency of USDA does and how they contribute to the advancement of the mission of the department. During the academic year, the students increase awareness regarding the different agencies of the USDA, and participate in promotion and recruitment efforts for the following year’s Ag Ambassador Program.
Miami Dade College Service Learning Program
Educational partnership since 2005 whereby SHRS provides students real-life laboratory experience coupled with the classroom theory. Students volunteer for at least 15 contact hours at SHRS, usually as consecutive weekly 3-4 hour time blocks. Involvement by students aids in facilitating ongoing research activities by their participation in short-term research projects.
In addition to these three programs, students from Florida International University and University of Florida students, primarily, have worked in the labs of most of the scientists for a number of years in both full time (summer) and part time (academic year) jobs. Opportunities for the best and the brightest students in science disciplines are available. Interested individuals should send their resume and Form OF306 for consideration.