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Graduate Students

  • To be considered for graduate support at SUNY-ESF you should have an undergraduate GPA => 3.0 and GRE scores with percentiles ideally > 70% in most categories (please provide scores and percentiles).  I am always eager to mentor motivated young conservation biologists who are aware of the rigors and opportunities of graduate school (please read this).

Current graduate students

  • Harrison Goldspiel (MS, current), Thesis topic: Forest legacy effects on amphibian populations
  • Joanna Lumsden-Pinto (MPS, current), Project topic: Integrated biological monitoring of Panamanian dry forest ecosystems
  • Leah Nagel (MS, current), Thesis topic: Vernal pool protection and restoration
  • Michelle Herman (MS, current), Thesis topic: Headstarting strategies for hellbenders in captivity 
  • Misha Paltsyn (PhD, current), Thesis topic: Strategic planning, implementation and evaluation of conservation programs for snow leopard and Altai argali in the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion.
  • Manoon "Ki" Pliosungnoen (PhD, current), Thesis topic: Tiger conservation in northwest Thailand 
  • Julia Vanaman (MS, current), Thesis topic: Map turtle conservation in an urban environment

Former graduate students

  • Michael Fishman (MS, 2017), Thesis: Roost and foraging habitat for Indiana bats (Myotis sodalis) in the southeastern Ontario lake plain of New York State
  • Samantha Dean (MS, 2017), Thesis: Distribution, Abundance, and Habitat Associations of Amphibians and Reptiles at the Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site, an Urban Protected Area
  • Liza Iegorova (MS, 2017), Thesis: Interacting Effects of Socio-Political and Environmental Factors on Rangeland Dynamics in the Altai Mountains of Central Asia.
  • Sahila Kudalkar (MS, 2016), Thesis: Microhabitat Relationships of Two Murid Rodents Rattus Andamanensis and Niviventer Fulvescens in Protected Forests of Northeastern India
  • Tess Youker (MS, 2016, co-advised with S. Ryan), Thesis: Epidemics of an Amphibian Ranavirus in Two Species of Vernal Pool-Breeding Anurans: Disease Surveillance and Environmental Drivers of Prevalence
  • LaPan, Stewart (MS 2015), Thesis: Bird, Reptile, and Amphibian Response to Habitat Enhancement Techniques in St. Lawrence River Coastal Wetlands.
  • Rachmansah, Angga (MS 2015): Thesis: Life History Traits, Latitude, and Sustainable Harvesting in Freshwater Turtles.
  • Brent Johnson (MS, 2013), Thesis: Management and status of an endangered massasauga rattlesnake population in New York State.
  • Olga Shevtsova, Darya Karpenko, Ielizaveta Iegorova, Nataliia Shynkarenko and Anna Ganzia (all M.P.S., 2013, joint course-based degree program with National University Kyiv - Mohyla Academy, Ukraine)
  • Ana Patricia Calderon (MS, co-advised with J. Frair, 2013), Thesis: Assessment of movement corridors for jaguars in eastern Guatemala.
  • Elizabeth Hunter (MS, 2012), Thesis: Ecosystem restoration through the introduction of ecological analog Giant Tortoises to Pinta Island, Galapagos.
  • Angela Sirois (MS, 2011), Thesis: Effects of habitat alterations on bog turtles (Glyptemys muhlenbergii): A contrast of responses by two populations in Massachusetts
  • Kevin Shoemaker (PhD, 2011), Thesis: Demography and population genetics of the bog turtle (Glyptemys muhlenbergii): Implications for regional conservation planning in New York State
  • Meredith Atwood (MS, 2011), Thesis: Effects of basal resources on the food web of temporary freshwater pools: Implications for amphibians and restoration efforts
  • Kristin Winchell (MS, Columbia University 2011, co-advisor Matt Palmer), Thesis: Aquatic turtle populations along an urban-rural gradient
  • Jason Townsend (PhD, 2011), Thesis: Mercury accumulation in forest floor horizons, songbirds and salamanders along a forested elevational gradient in the Catskill Mountains, New York
  • Andrew Myers (MPS, 2011), Thesis: Landscape and microhabitat drivers of Bog turtle (Glyptemys muhlenbergii) occurrence in southeastern New York State
  • Samuel Quinn (MS, 2009), Thesis: Factors influencing distribution of the Eastern Hellbender in the northern segment of its range
  • Angelena Ross (MS, 2007), Thesis: Spruce grouse distribution, movements and habitat selection: a mid-successional species in an aging forested landscape
  • Kevin Shoemaker (MS, 2007), Thesis: Habitat manipulation as a viable strategy for the conservation of the Massasauga Rattlesnake in New York State
  • Viorel Popescu (MS, 2007), Thesis: Complex interactions shaping Mink Frog (Rana septentrionalis) distribution in New York State: Pond factors, landscape connectivity and climate change
  • Nancy Karraker (PhD, 2007), Thesis: Investigation of the amphibian decline phenomenon: novel small-scale factors and a large-scale overview
  • Hara Woltz (MS, Columbia University 2006, co-advisor Matt Palmer), Thesis: Design of road crossing structures for amphibians and reptiles
  • Joel Strong (MS, 2005), Thesis: Seed dispersal and the ecological implications of hunting Geochelone carbonaria and G. denticulata in northwestern Brazil
  • Nuria Bernal (MPS, 2004).
  • Heather Jensen (MS, 2004), Thesis: Herpetofaunal interactions with wetland vegetation as mediated by regulation St. Lawrence River water levels
  • James Arrigoni Jr (MS, 2003), Thesis: An evaluation of amphibian monitoring approaches in the Maya forest
  • Shawn Carter (PhD, 2003), Thesis: An assessment of the contributions of forest structure and spatial scale to faunal diversity patterns in the Adirondack Mountain region 
  • David Steen (MS, 2003), Thesis: The effects of roads on freshwater turtle populations
  • Jordan Wolf (MS, 2003), Thesis: Interactions among forest fragmentation, carrion beetle communities, and patterns of carrion decomposition in Baltimore, Maryland, USA
  • Ilana Cantrell (MS, 2002), Thesis: Land-use change in New York State: 1982-1997
  • Greg Shriver (PhD, 2002), Thesis: Conservation ecology of salt marsh birds in New England 
  • Kris Whiteleather (MS, 2001), Thesis: Distribution of streamside salamanders (Amphibia: Caudata:Plethodontidae) in acid mine drainage streams of West Virginia
  • Eriko Motegi (MS, 2000), Thesis: Genetic diversity in Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum marsh.) populations in relation to stand disturbance history



Dr. Geri Tierney (NPS/NETN project, ongoing), Dr. Guillaume Bastille-Rousseau (NSF/tortoise project, ongoing), Dr. David Patrick (NYSDOT project), Dr. Elizabeth Harper (NSF LEAP project), Dr. Han Overman (NSF Project Fauna Guyana), Dr. Jeffrey Luzar (NSF Project Fauna Guyana), Dr. Courtney Conway (USFWS waterbirds project).