The McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity (MGCL) at the Florida Museum of Natural History (FLMNH), University of Florida (UF), is currently accepting applications from prospective students interested in earning a Master’s or Ph.D. degree from the Department of Biology, Entomology and Nematology Department, or other appropriate UF department, with a research emphasis on butterflies and moths. The MGCL will provide a Graduate Research Assistantship (stipend + tuition waiver) to the successful candidate for a period of two years, contingent on continuing successful progress towards their degree, starting in Fall (August) 2024. Priority will be given to students seeking a Master’s degree.

The MGCL is the only university-based research facility dedicated to the study of Lepidoptera in the world, and it is also part of a highly active natural history museum with broad research programs spanning the diversity of life. Successful candidates will join a large group of faculty, postdocs, graduate, and undergraduate students engaged in research and educational activities focused on Lepidoptera. Potential fields of study include systematics, evolution, ecology, conservation, genomics, and physiology, among others. Plans to make use of the MGCL’s collections as part of the candidate’s research will be considered positively.

The McGuire Center values equity, accessibility, and inclusion in its research, collections, and outreach and is committed to creating a supportive community with equitable opportunities for learning and research advancement.

Before submitting their application, candidates are strongly encouraged to identify an appropriate staff or faculty member at the McGuire Center who is willing and suitable to serve as their graduate committee supervisor. Candidates also need to fulfill the admission requirements of the appropriate department and UF’s Graduate School. The student’s assistantship responsibilities are expected to include assisting 14-20 hours a week in curating the MGCL’s collections and/or with other research or education-related activities at the MGCL, under the supervision of our staff.

More information is available at the following links:

McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity

Entomology and Nematology Department

Biology Department

School of Natural Resources and Environment

UF Graduate school


Applicants for the McGuire Center Graduate Research Assistantship should prepare the following:

  1. Curriculum Vitae.
  2. Unofficial transcripts.
  3. Students whose first language is not English should provide evidence of English language proficiency, either by demonstrating that they meet college coursework requirements or have achieved the minimum test scores (TOEFL or IELTS) established by the University of Florida (see If a test has not yet been taken, provide a clear statement (e.g., with test dates) about plans to take a suitable test.
  4. Names and contact details of three people who can comment on the candidate’s potential as a graduate student and researcher.
  5. A statement of no more than 2 pages describing: a) the candidate’s relevant background and expertise that will provide a foundation for the proposed research; b) research interests and ideas for potential thesis topics.

Please send these materials as a single PDF file to Dr. Keith Willmott (, with the subject line “Application for McGuire Assistantship”. The deadline for applications is 11:59 pm EST, December 15th, 2023. Please send any questions to