Prospective Students

Interested in working with the Coastal Conservation and Restoration Ecology Lab?
I am always looking for independent, self-motivated students who have a natural curiosity about topics related to those investigated by the Coastal Conservation and Restoration Ecology Lab (CCREL). Competition is strong for a limited number of positions, so please use your application to provide evidence of your writing skills, academic achievements, research experience, areas of interest, and professional goals.

If you are planning to apply to TAMUCC and are interested in working with the CCREL, please contact me before submitting your application! Who are you? What are you interested in? Why do you want to work with me? What interests you about our graduate programs at TAMUCC? I advise students in TAMUCC’s Fisheries and Mariculture Program (M.S.), Marine Biology Program (M.S. and Ph.D.), and Coastal and Marine System Science Program (Ph.D.), so you may want to plan your application accordingly.

Funding to support students in my lab—and thus the number of students in the lab at any given time—depends on the availability of teaching and research assistant-ships.

What is it like to work in my lab?
Most of my research has a strong field-based component, so expect to get wet, muddy, sweaty, and dirty! Students develop their research projects in coordination with me and receive hand-on training in experimental techniques, but they are ultimately expected to be independent in terms of carrying out research activities. Although each student develops their own research project, students are also expected to collaborate and assist other students with their projects as well. The CCREL as a well-oiled machine made up of many independent, yet synchronized, parts.

My ambition is for all of my students to achieve their highest potential in graduate school, regardless of what their project is and where their career may goals lead them after graduation. Every M.S. student in my lab is expected to submit (or be very close to submitting) a manuscript for publication resulting from their thesis by the time of graduation. Ph.D. students should have 2-3 papers submitted by the end of their tenure as graduate students. Publishing is important! Each of us has the opportunity—and responsibility—to advance the body of scientific knowledge by sharing the scientific insights that we gain with others in our field.

What is it like to be a graduate student?
Graduate school is very different than college. You are expected to be a teacher, a mentor, and a student all in one. This can be a difficult transition for some, but I find that most students are able to adjust during their first semester. You are no longer just a student; you are training to become a colleague of your professors. Your academic schedule will be demanding, as it will often include coursework, teaching, and research responsibilities. Weekends and holiday breaks become shorter or nonexistent. Make sure you pick a mentor and an area of study that you love! Passion is the key ingredient to success in this field.