Leeds Ecosystem, Atmosphere & Forest (LEAF) Centre

Student placements with LEAF this summer!

February 13, 2017

We are currently advertising two paid opportunities for undergraduate students from the Faculty of Environment to work with us over the summer break.


First or second year students in the School of Earth and Environment have the opportunity to apply for a Research Experience Placement (REP) with LEAF during summer 2017.

In collaboration with the BBC and the United Bank of Carbon, LEAF are taking part in a national primary school science campaign Terrific Scientific. In May 2017, children aged 9-11 will be investigating the trees on their school grounds and learning about their importance for climate, human health and biodiversity. Schools will collect information about their trees (species and size) and submit it to us at the LEAF centre for analysis.

During this REP project the student will analyse the data submitted by primary schools across the country to find out: How many trees does the average school have in their grounds? Which species of tree dominate in different parts of the country? Do rural schools have more trees in their grounds than urban schools? How much carbon are these trees storing? What impact could these trees be having on air quality around the schools?

Find out more about the REP and apply here (University of Leeds login required).

For first year students, the Faculty of Environment is offering four Undergraduate Research and Leadership Scholarships (UGRLs). UGRLs are generously funded by alumni to enable you to develop your research and leadership capabilities by participating in established academic research projects as preparation for future research and leadership roles in further study or employment.

As well as research, UGRL scholars will also be able to participate in training courses that will build leadership skills through attending a series of residential and one day events through the period of the scholarship.

This year, LEAF are offering the opportunity to help establish and conduct some of the first research at the Leeds Forest Observatory (LFO). The UGRL scholar would join us for a 6 week period during both summer 2017 and summer 2018.

Urban green spaces such as domestic gardens, parks and woodlands provide many benefits to human urban populations, and a vital habitat for wildlife. The LFO is a natural ecosystem field laboratory recently established by LEAF, in collaboration with Leeds City Council and the United Bank of Carbon. Research conducted at the LFO will allow us to explore the important role of urban forests in the provision of ecosystem services.

The exact nature of the research conducted as part of this UGRL can be influenced by the interests of the student. Areas for investigation could include, but are not limited to: air quality monitoring, for biomass estimates, species identification, biodiversity investigations, surveys of public attitudes and experiences using the park, and meteorological monitoring.

Find out more about the UGRL here, and apply here.

The deadline for both opportunities is 9am on 28th February.