Joining OEB

There are several mechanisms by which you can join us in our quest to understand the natural world and microbial responses to the perturbations imposed by we humans. Fostering the next generation in developing robust science skills, discovery and leadership is very important to the scientists that lead the newly formed OEB research team. Multiple former members from the Worden Lab have established successful careers (see here). We are always looking for talented folks to join whether undergraduates, Masters, PhD or postdoctoral fellows. We support diversity and welcome individuals of all backgrounds and all genders.

Although we do not currently list each specific project in OEB you can get a good sense of what we are up to by going here and by looking at recent publications – there is always a gap in what we are doing and when it appears in print – but you get a sense of the various directions this way.

For a Masters, please look at the website for the program. All OEB research theme leads also teach in the GEOMAR Biological Oceanography Master’s Program. This program requires a thesis and we encourage you to take a look at our research and papers and contact leads directly to see if they have a project that would work for you both.
For a PhD, make sure that you have at least some lab experience, that you reach out to the individual who leads the research area you are interested in, and that you can provide two or more letters of reference. PhDs require funding, so if you do not have a fellowship of your own make sure you reach out well in advance so that we can see what funding is available! Please find more information about this here.

For Postdoctoral research please send a letter of interest to the prospective mentor explaining your experience and why you would be a good team member and scientific contributor to OEB. You should be first author on at least one publication in an international journal with others on the way.

For undergraduates, diploma or interns, please send your application 4-6 months before you would like to start in the lab. We cannot currently take on many interns at once so this restricts numbers.

Before you reach out, please think through these questions:

  • What do you find most exciting about our work?
  • Why are you interested in this area of science, and the specific theme you are applying to?
  • We have ongoing projects but are always happy to entertain new ideas. Do you have a new project you would like to bring to OEB? If so does it bring new skills for you or is it a continuation of something you are comfortable with (the former is where you want to be!)
  • Postdocs: How you would complement expertise we have in OEB, and what makes us the right place for this next important step for you?
  • What about you, or your background, makes you a strong candidate?
  • Are you a team-spirited and self-motivated person?
  • PhD and Postdocs: Life brings lots of curve balls, but from where you stand now what are your longer term goals?

Finally, we are passionate deeply engaged scientists and several of us also have families – so it is always a good idea to cc OEB’s Team Assistant Kristin Voss on your inquiries in case we’ve missed it.

Current Courses Offered (Summer 2019)

MNF-bioc-202 Advanced Practical Course in Biological Oceanography - Practical Part B1 (Plankton Ecology) (MNF-bioc-201 - Practical B1) (500074)

Course Details: This field course will take place in Curacao from 27.4.2019 to 6.5.2019

Instructors: Prof. Dr. Alexandra Z. Worden, Dr. Kenneth D. Hoadley, Maria Hamilton

Participants in this Practical Course will be involved in a multiyear study underway in the Ocean EcoSystems Biology Unit of GEOMAR's RD3 (Marine Ecology) focused on characterizing the microbial and phytoplankton communities found within the various marine ecosystems around the Island. The short graduate level course offered this spring will focus on field methods utilized to study the microbial/phytoplankton communities. Through this course, students will gain experience in designing field sampling efforts, carrying out coral sampling and clearance rates studies, measuring chlorophyll fluorescence and algal productivity and collecting samples for enumerating cells and characterizing their molecular diversity. Students will learn the basics of coral reef ecology and what techniques are utilized to study the microbial life (bacteria, archaea and unicellular eukaryotes) that supports them. Samples collected during this course have the potential to be utilized in one of two Master's theses.


MNF-bioc-201: Advanced Studies in Biological Oceanography – Lecture (MNF-bioc-201) (500076)

Course Details: Tue, Wed, Thu 12:15 - 13:00, DW20 - R.B54 [Hörsaal (Westufer)] (außer Thu 25.4.2019)

Instructors: Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Martin Wahl, Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Ulf Riebesell, Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Thorsten B.H. Reusch, Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Ute Hentschel Humeida, -N.N.-, Dr. rer. nat. Birte Matthiessen, Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Anja Engel, Priv.-Doz. Dr. Florian Weinberger, Dr. Elizabeta Briski, Prof. Dr. Alexandra Z. Worden, Dr. Kristin Bergauer, Dr. Elisabeth Hehenberger.

Course Description: Assorted topics in biological oceanography including marine microbes, ocean modeling, genetics, symbioses, deep sea biology, etc. 


View the full list of M.Sc. Biological Oceanography courses offered at GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research during Summer 2019 here.