Future students

Availability of positions


We are looking for talented master and PhD students who want to join a team to conduct cutting-edge research on genetic and genomic methods for livestock improvement. Please contact a professor in our team directly and inquire about the availability of positions. Availability of master or PhD positions will be also announced on the Animal Geneticist’s Discussion Group (AGDG) mailing list.

PhDs in animal breeding with quantitative skills are rare in the USA as well as in many other countries. Various breeding companies are looking to hire a PhD in quantitative genetics. Read an editorial or Dr. Misztal’s note on shortages in the field.

Code for graduate students



The purpose of graduate studies at BG/ADS is to help each graduate student become an expert in one of several fields in animal science research. The group of BG creates an appropriate environment, provides coursework, topics, nurturing, critical evaluation, etc.

Substantial resources are required to train graduate students including large time expenditure by the major professor. Students are expected to be genuinely interested in their graduate studies and to achieve success upon graduation that positively exemplifies their research training. Below are specific expectations from each BG graduate student.

  1. The students will do their best to become experts in their field of study. They will contribute intellectually, not just labor, to their project. They will keep in touch with the literature to know of new major developments and be aware of the prominent scientists or leaders in their field of study.
  2. The students will possess or develop writing skills to a point where they can write drafts of scientific papers with no substantial help from the major professor, in English and properly structured.
  3. The students will develop speaking skills to a point where their ideas are readily communicated and understood.
  4. The students will use nearly all their intellectual capacity to succeed in their graduate studies. Students whose objectives are not considered focused on their graduate studies by their graduate committee will be viewed as wasting BG resources and may be dismissed.

Traditionally, BG has not enforced maintaining office hours for graduate students. However, it is clear from successful students that time commitment to research is highly related to success. Lack of research time commitment and/or failure to progress in the expected time-frame will be grounds for dismissal.

Scientists vs. Technicians

The main characteristic of a real scientist is an inquisitive mind. A scientist asks why and how about things/ideas? A scientist is open to new ideas.

Signs of promising/unpromising student

Promising student Student not likely to succeed
Interested in many things. Not interested in anything but courses.
Socializes with other graduate students. Stays in own cubicle.
Interacts with many people. Interacts mainly with people of own culture.
Reads literature. Reads literature only when forced to.
Studies to learn. Studies to get good grades and fulfill requirements.
If given a task by major professor, tries to do it. Needs to be reminded a few times.
Is often absorbed by his studies, including some evenings and nights. Changes to something else when out of office.
Comes with exciting ideas to him/her and his/her professor. Does not have much excitement. Student is excited by something else than his/her work.
Student improves with time; speaks and writes better No improvement visible
Student finds that his/her professor is not always right. He/She engages in discussions. The student is quiet.