Information for Prospective Graduate Students
I advise graduate students with interests in landscape ecology and animal populations, behavioral ecology (particularly applied to conservation), human impacts on wildlife, and the ecological dimensions of wildlife conservation in Latin America. I encourage my students to pursue their own ideas and interests, and expect to work with them in a collaborative, collegial fashion rather than in "director-apprentice" mode. My students design and conduct their own research (No canned projects!).
Students in my group are supported on research assistantships, fellowships, and occasionally teaching assistantships through the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation and the University of Florida, as well as outside sources. I encourage prospective US students to apply for external funding such as NSF Predoctoral Fellowships, and foreign students to apply for support from their home institutions, government agencies, or international organizations (e.g., Fulbright, OAS, USAID, etc.).
The situation for Fall 2013
I currently do not have funding to support additional graduate students on research assistantships or teaching assistantships for Fall 2013. I will consider students who wish to pursue research in tropical or temperate regions of Latin America and who are eligible for competitive fellowships or have external funding. My current research and training program focuses on Argentina, Chile, and Ecuador; thus, I am particularly interested in students from those countries but will consider students from other countries who are a good fit with my lab.
Students interested in working with our group should:
- have clear goals for their graduate studies and beyond. Graduate school can be challenging, frustrating, and tough financially...but it should be FUN! The fun is more likely to dominate if you have a clear idea of where you are going! If you are not sure about how graduate programs work or how you should approach graduate school, you will find good advice on the web page of Peter Frederick (Research Professor in WEC).
- be interested in ecological theory and in using experiments, modeling, and other quantitative tools, as well as field studies, to test hypotheses that advance conservation. Your thesis may emphasize primarily theoretical or applied questions, but you should have a strong appreciation for both.
- actively seek academic and professional experiences that go well beyond taking class and completing a thesis within a single discipline. I strongly support interdisciplinary work. University of Florida has a tremendous diversity of people and research programs that enrich the graduate student experience. My students participate in activities such as seminars and discussion groups in the WEC department, Center of Latin American Studies, School of Natural Resources and the Environment, and other departments across campus. I encourage them to collaborate with other faculty, post-doctoral researchers and students and to participate in workshops and training programs on campus and elsewhere. My students give talks at scientific meetings, publish in peer-reviewed journals, and participate in public outreach. I expect my graduate students to value teaching experience whether they plan to work in academia or in some other area.
- aggressively pursue grants, fellowships, and other financial support for graduate work. Grant writing is an essential skill in many jobs, and experience in this arena as a graduate student will be a valuable asset in the job market. My graduate students have been successful in garnering research funds from a variety of sources (e.g., NSF, conservation foundations, and government agencies).
- generally have a positive outlook, a fun, collaborative spirit, and a passion for making a difference in the world (whichever piece you choose)!
If you are interested in pursuing graduate studies with me as your advisor, please send me a vitae or resume, statements of your research interests and career goals (1 page each), copies of transcripts from all universities attended (unofficial photocopies are ok), and names, affiliations, and e-mail addresses of three references. The vitae should include GRE scores and cumulative GPA. See WEC Graduate Programs Web Site for WEC admissions requirements and application procedures for the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation.