Schedule: Day Shift (1000-hour temporary, seasonal position) in Cabell County, WV

Duties: Interns will be involved with tick surveillance duties. Tick Surveillance: Tick surveillance is intended to monitor changes in the distribution and abundance of ticks and the presence and prevalence of tickborne pathogens in order to provide actionable, evidence based information to clinicians, the public, and policy makers. Key questions addressed through this program include when and where humans are at risk for exposure to ticks and tickborne pathogens. Duties include field collection of ticks in West Virginia, identification of tick species, electronic storage of tick collection information, and analysis, interpretation and dissemination of tick surveillance results. Due to the recent increase in human Lyme disease cases in West Virginia, workers will systematically monitor and collect blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis), tick vector for Lyme disease (Borrelia burgdorferi), human anaplasmosis (Anaplasma phagocytophilum), and human babesiosis (Babesia microti), at pre-designated surveillance sites in West Virginia, using the tick drag method. These studies will determine the infection rate of B. burgdorferi in I. scapularis and estimate the density of hostseeking I. scapularis. The intern will be involved in tick species identification, physical storage of tick specimens in alcohol, and electronic storage of tick surveillance results in the program’s electronic database and CDC ArboNET. Tick surveillance projects are conducted primarily from late May through July, the period when I. scapularis tick nymphs, the primary tick life stage most responsible for transmitting Lyme disease, are most active. Vector surveillance interns participate in staff and program meetings. Under the guidance of the State Public Health Entomologist, workers can analyze, publish, and present results for school projects, professional conferences, and publications.

Training: Previous coursework in college-level biology will assist in understanding and appreciating vector ecology. Applicants with a strong background in field biology, either through coursework or previous experience, are strongly encouraged. Training will be provided on arthropod identification. Experience with data entry and computer applications is necessary.

Requirements: Applicants should have plans to pursue a career in biology or related field. A current driver’s license is necessary.

Salary: $14.25/hour

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