Frequently Asked Questions
What is EECB?
The Ecology Evolution and Conservation Program is a graduate specialization for students at the University of Hawaii with interests in the general areas of Ecology Evolution and Conservation Biology.
What is a "graduate specialization"?
A "specialization" allows students with interests that might go beyond the limits of the existing departments and whose research cuts across disciplines.
How is it different from being a grad student in the Departments at UH?
When EECB Students form their thesis/dissertation committees, they can select members from the entire EECB graduate faculty. This faculty includes faculty in 10 different Departments in 6 schools and colleges at UH Manoa and UH Hilo as well as faculty affiliate faculty members working in State and Federal natural resource management agencies as well as NGO's. Additionally EECB students are eligible to apply for research and travel funds administered through the EECB program. - Aside from these direct benefits EECB students and faculty participate in an EECB seminar series (EvoLunch) and there are several cross-disciplinary research programs in which EECB grad students and faculty work together.
What kinds of financial assistance are available to EECB students?
This varies depending the status of different programs. Also, there are several different kinds of support that EECB students can apply for ranging from, for example, the existing NSFGK-12 fellowships which provide full support to smaller travel and research support grants through EECB. Because the availability of these different funding sources changes quickly please check the EECB web site for the most up to date information on support.
Would I be in one of the regular Departments or in EECB?
Yes, all EECB students are in one of the 10 participating Departments and it is from that Department that they will receive their degree (However, the diploma will state that the graduate has completed the specialization in EECB as well as the Departmental requirements).
How do I Apply for admission to the EECB program?
Since all grad students at UH must be accepted into a regular Department, application to the Department of your choice is the first step. On the UH application form (Box #6) there is a place to indicate that you wish to be considered for admission to EECB in addition to the Department where you are applying. This insures that your application will be brought to the attention of the EECB admissions committee. You will need to send a copy of your UH grad school application directly to the EECB program office along with a letter expressing your interest in the program.
Does EECB accept applications for both Fall and Spring Semesters?
New UH students are only accepted for the fall semester. Existing UH students may apply for spring semester. Some of the participating Departments only accept fall applications so check the Departmental rules for this information.
If I am a graduate student at UH is it too late to think about applying to EECB?
No, The EECB admissions committee accepts applications from students currently enrolled in a graduate program at UH. The requirements are still the same; you must have an EECB sponsor and three letters of recommendation. Applications from students already in any Department can be submitted for either the fall or spring semester. - Please email the EECB office expressing your interest in applying to the program. We will then obtain a copy of your file from your department. You will need to have your sponsor write a letter of recommendation in order to be admitted to the EECB Program.
What are the requirements for admission?
Each Grad Department has its own set of admission requirements so you should contact the Department to determine exactly what that Department requires. (Much of this information can be found in the Departmental listings on the UH Web page). - In addition to securing a sponsor you will need three letters of recommendation supporting your application to the EECB program. In addition to whatever departmental admission requirements, the EECB program requires that each applicant have an EECB faculty member as a sponsor.
If I need a sponsor how do I find that person?
In your preparations for application to grad school you should be contacting faculty members who are working close to your area of interest. It is a very good idea to begin communicating with these faculty before you begin your application process. You will need to know if that faculty member is accepting new students, what kind of research support they might be able to provide and what kinds of research projects you might be interested in.
Must my EECB Sponsor be my committee chair?
This is the normal situation and it makes the most sense in terms of your being able to get your own research project and thesis/committee organized, but in some cases the EECB sponsor is not the chair of a student's committee though they would be on their thesis/dissertation committee.
What if my interests change, can I change my EECB sponsor?
Yes, it is possible to change your dissertation/committee and your EECB faculty sponsor through a memo to the Graduate division.
How will I know about my application to EECB?
Since all EECB students must be accepted to a grad Department the first step is your acceptance to the Department to which you applied. If that application is successful, your EECB application will be passed on to the EECB admissions committee and you should hear from EECB a few weeks after you have received notice of acceptance into the grad Department to which you applied.
What are the requirements once I am in the program?
To remain an EECB student in good standing you should attend the weekly "EvoLunches". For completion of the EECB program you will also need to pass one graduate course each (i.e. at least two credits each in courses numbered 600 and above) in the areas of Ecology; Evolution and Conservation Biology. Most of these courses are listed on this site. - In special cases other courses can be substituted for those listed on the web page, but you must get the substitution approved by the graduate education committee.