Graduate Program Description

The Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (EEB) Graduate Program at UCSC reflects the remarkable local and global diversity of species and environments studied by the EEB faculty and students. The vision of the EEB graduate program is to provide a nurturing, creative, and intellectual environment conducive to the development of world-class scientists. The EEB graduate program encourages close working relations between students and faculty in an informal atmosphere advantageous to rapid learning and professional growth. Interdisciplinary collaborations with oceanographers, geologists, mathematicians, environmental and conservation biologists, toxicologists, and others enable students to explore the conceptual connections between related fields as they acquire mastery in their areas of specialization.


The graduate program in EEB at UC Santa Cruz is one of the premier EEB programs in the country. UCSC graduate students in EEB regularly win prestigious research fellowships and awards for their presentations at international meetings in addition to publishing their work in the best journals of their fields. In addition to taking advantage of local field sites and state-of-the-art departmental laboratories, more than two-thirds of the EEB faculty participate in field studies throughout the world, especially in Africa, Latin America, Antarctica and the Arctic, and around the Pacific Rim. Research in EEB comprises four core areas: ecology, evolutionary biology, physiology, and behavior.

Core Courses

BIOE 200A, Scientific Skills
BIOE 200B, Advanced Organismal Biology
BIOE 279, Evolutionary Ecology
BIOE 293, Readings in Ecology and Evolution
BIOE 294, Ecology, Evolutionary Biology Seminar
BIOE 295, Advanced Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Seminar

Graduate Program Administration

The EEB Graduate Program Coordinator and EEB Graduate Advisory Committee (EEB-GAC) serve as the primary links between EEB students, the department, and university.

If students have questions or concerns regarding university/program administration, policy, processes, or degree progress, the appropriate contacts are:

EEB Graduate Program Coordinator: Sarah Arantza Amador

EEB-GAC Chair: Professor Kathleen Kay

In addition to overseeing admissions decisions, EEB-GAC is also responsible for deliberating on graduate program policy matters, overseeing student progress-to-degree, and awarding funds for summer research and writing, scientific meetings, and nominations for fellowships and awards.

2018-19 EEB-GAC

Kathleen Kay, Chair

Suzanne Alonzo

Marm Kilpatrick

Kristy Kroeker

For issues related to academic and professional development, courses, academic milestones, etc., students should contact their faculty advisor.

Graduate Student Representatives

Two graduate representatives are selected by students to act in a leadership role within the department the representatives are invited to attend faculty meetings (excluding those parts where confidential information is discussed), and may be asked to gather and present information on graduate student opinion on a range of issues, including graduate program policy and hiring decisions. The graduate representatives also help organize departmental seminars and symposia.

2018-19 Graduate Student Representatives

Jason John

Melissa Cronin