Getting a Head Start in Research

October 4, 2022

Drone shot of KBS fields, photo courtesy of Kevin Kahmark

Photo courtesy of Kevin Kahmark

After being accepted to the Honors College, awarded an Alumni Distinguished Scholarship, and receiving an offer for a professorial assistantship, Maggie Jones knew Michigan State University was the school for her.

Jones is a second-year student studying plant biology with a minor in environmental sustainability studies. She is also considering pursuing a second bachelor's in fisheries and wildlife.

“And maybe with a concentration in conservation biology,” she added.

Maggie Jones headshot

Jones just wrapped up a 10-week internship program at Kellogg Biological Station (KBS). This program was attended by around 15 other MSU students and 15 others from across the country.

“For the first half of the summer I took a plant systematics and ecology lab out in the field, then I also was working part-time throughout the summer in the Robertson lab,” she said.

“I also had my own personal project which was on rain exclusion shelters used at KBS to simulate drought,” she continued.

This opportunity taught Jones that she wants to do field research and spend time outdoors. It also helped her learn different research techniques like gas research and how to use various instrumentations.

During her time at the university, Jones has most treasured her experience with the Outdoors Club. She especially loves the rock climbing trips they have taken, so much so that she is helping restart Climb State, MSU’s rock climbing club, this upcoming year as an outreach coordinator.

She also has participated with the Plant Biology Club, Honors Students Actively Recruiting (H-STAR), the Residential Initiative on the Study of the Environment (RISE) Program, and her professorial assistant research position studying plant virus ecology.

Jones also gained experience in this field before attending Michigan State University as a horticulture intern at Baker Arboretum and Downing Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

“In the future, I hope to spend a lot more time with the outdoors club and hopefully get on e-board,” She said. “Also, during my time being dual enrolled, I want to get more invested in a lab and do my own research.”