fence lizard
Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation
5 day old bobolink chicks
plant growing in the snow

Welcome to the Graduate Program in Ecology and Evolution

About the Program

Ecology and Evolution at Rutgers has a long and distinguished history. The E&E graduate program includes approximately 80 faculty and 50 graduate students. The program faculty is comprised of roughly 25 professors who are members the undergraduate Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources, the remaining members of the graduate program hail from other departments and campuses. The graduate program is interdisciplinary in nature and offers graduate education and training in microbial, plant, animal, and human ecology under the direction of outstanding faculty located at three campuses (New Brunswick, Newark, and Camden); two marine stations (in Tuckerton and Bivalve); the Pinelands Field Station in New Lisbon; and the Cary Institute for Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, New York.

Members of the faculty actively pursue research in conservation biology, ecosystem ecology, evolutionary biology, marine biology, microbial ecology, population and community ecology, population genetics, and restoration ecology.

Students may study toward either M.S. or Ph.D. degrees. An M.S. is not required to enter the Ph.D. program. The graduate program falls under the auspices the School of Graduate Studies from which the final degrees are conferred.

The application deadline for fall 2019 has passed. The program does not have a spring admissions. Note that fall 2020 deadline for application submission to be considered for an internal fellowship is December 15, 2019. Learn more about the application process.


Congratulations to Julia VanEtten

Julia received a NASA Future Investigators in NASA Earth and Space Science and Technology
(FINESST) grant. This 3-year grant will support Julia and her research on generating a mechanistic understanding of horizontal gene transfer as a driver of cell adaptation on the early earth.

Congratulations to Mike Acquafredda

Mike is the recipient of a John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship - a National Sea Grant College Program that provides one-year fellowships working in federal government offices in Washington, D.C. 

  1. Congratulations to Chris Martine

Congratulations to alumnus Chris Martine (MS 2001) on the receipt of the Peter Raven Award from the American Society of Plant Taxonomists.
Read more here

  1. Congratulations to LaShanda Williams

  2. LaShanda Williams received an NSF DDIG in biological anthropology which will allow LaShanda to collaborate with researchers at the Laboratories of Molecular Anthropology and Microbiome Research (LMAMR) to conduct data analysis at their specialized ancient DNA lab in Norman OK.
  1. Trees change sex in response to stress.

  2. Jennifer Blake-Mahmud's research on striped maples reveals that they can change sex in response to environmental stresses. Read more here.
  3. The complete article in Springer. and a write-up in The Washington Post

Marine Mammal Commission under threat of elimination.

Alex Safiq has an article in Scientific American on the elimination of the Marine Mammal Commission in President Trump's proposed budget. Read more here.

For more up-to-the-minute news check the DEENR website

  1. Rafael Valentin Awarded the Invasion Ecology Best Presentation at the Ecological Society of America 2017 Annual Meeting and has received two external grants to support his research.

  2. Rafael Valentin, a graduate student in both the Lockwood lab and Fonseca lab, has been awarded two graduate student research grants for his novel research utilizing environmental DNA (eDNA) in terrestrial systems.Read more here

  4. Jennifer Blake-Mahmud Awarded Best Oral Paper in the Physiology Section at Botany 2017 Conference

  5. Jennifer Blake-Mahmud, a PhD Candidate in the lab of Dr. Lena Struwe, won the award for the Best Oral Paper in the Physiology Section at the Botany 2017 conference in Fort Worth, Texas, in June 2017. Read more here

  6. Congratulations to Cara Faillace on receipt of two GSNB Awards

  7. Graduate student Cara Faillace recently received two 2017 awards from the Graduate School New Brunswick. Cara’s 2017 Dean’s Research Award reflects her outstanding research accomplishments, including recent high-profile first-authored publications in Nature Ecology & Evolution and Ecology Letters. In particular, Cara’s Nature Ecology & Evolution article was featured in a “News and Views” piece in the first issue of Nature Ecology & Evolution and has received attention from a number of online news outlets, including Rutgers Today and Eurekalert!, the news website of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Cara’s 2017 Graduate Student Teaching Award reflects her excellence as a Teaching Assistant in a number of ecology classes and as the sole instructor of her own original class titled “Seminar in Invasion Ecology”. ?Cara independently developed this upper-division course for undergraduate majors with the support of a 2015 Dissertation Teaching Award. Cara is the first graduate student in the Graduate Program of Ecology and Evolution to receive all three graduate student awards offered by the Graduate School New Brunswick. Congratulations Cara!

Congratulations to Mike Acquafredda

Mike is a recipient of a USDA Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) 2017 Graduate Student grant award. Mike's project is titled "Breeding for thermal tolerance in farmed atlantic surfclams (Spisula solidissima)". Congratulations Mike!