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GeoQuery Student Research Assistantships

GeoQuery, a research project at AidData, is accepting applications on a rolling basis for William & Mary students to work in the spring and fall semesters as research assistants. The lab has three teams—GeoData, GeoBoundaries, and GeoDev—each with different activities and required qualifications as described below.

Please note that applications to the lab are assessed once a semester, and you may not hear back on your application until the end of the semester in which you applied. Only current William & Mary students are eligible to apply.

GeoData

GeoQuery relies on students to help us identify the best datasets to distribute to our researchers through the platform. This position does not require any research or background experience, and is intended for freshmen to junior students looking to become involved in research. The focus and responsibility of the GeoData research team is to gather, research, and prepare (or create!) datasets that can be used in potential research projects, both here at William & Mary and in academia more broadly. These datasets are collected to be incorporated into the public GeoQuery platform, which is used by thousands of individuals from hundreds of organizations to facilitate research and policymaking. Students who participate in this program will be able to gain a foundation in working in research, and have the opportunity to gain recognition in research papers and academic briefs.

GeoBoundaries

Did you know we're not sure where some cities, counties, districts, or even state borders are around the world? It’s true! The focus and responsibility of the GeoBoundaries research team is to collect and prepare better, more accurate subnational boundaries of countries across the globe for use in research and the GeoQuery platform. This position is intended for sophomores, juniors, and seniors looking to get involved in research focused in international relations and geospatial studies, and requires experience and/or relevant coursework in geospatial analysis; specifically, GIS 201 - Introduction to GIS (formerly listed as INTR 204).The boundaries will be accessible by researchers and students who may desire to use the information for their own research and projects. Students on this team may be able to (a) receive COLL 400 course credit through independent research in the Data Science Program; (b) receive formal credit as a contributor to the GeoBoundaries project in published materials (i.e., if you create the best boundaries known for Mexico, every researcher using it will be citing you); and (c) be competitive for Data Science Fellowships.

Read about the GeoBoundaries team's work so far here.

GeoDev

R&D makes GeoQuery work. Have machine learning skills? Web development? Python? Want to help the other teams work better, solve text-mining problems, keep our website working, or work on other applied computational projects? GeoDev is for you. This position requires knowledge and/or relevant coursework in computer science and computer programming; specifically CS 141 or DATA 141, as well as basic GIS skills (GIS 201 - Introduction to GIS, formerly listed as INTR 204). It is also recommended that you have previous experience working with JavaScript or other web-based technologies. The focus and responsibility of the GeoDev research team is to provide technical assistance to the GeoBoundaries and GeoData teams by debugging code, solving programming problems, improving the GeoQuery website, and deriving new code to solve applied research problems. Students who participate in this program will be able to gain experience in applying computer science knowledge in a research environment, and will have the opportunity to gain recognition in research papers and other career opportunities. Students on this team may be able to: (a) receive COLL 400 course credit through independent research in the Data Science Program; (b) receive formal credit as a creator of new software packages, R or Python scripts; and (c) be competitive for Data Science Fellowships.

Application Instructions

To apply, fill out the online application here. For questions, please contact raoberman@email.wm.edu.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

The College of William & Mary values diversity and invites applications from underrepresented groups who will enrich the research, teaching and service missions of the university. The College is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and encourages applications from women, minorities, protected veterans, and individuals with disabilities.