Ecology & Conservation Biology

Ecology & Conservation Biology

Biology involves the study of the interactions among the different components of life, from molecules to global cycles. The Minor in Ecology and Conservation Biology focuses on understanding the evolution, distribution and threats to biodiversity. Emphasis is placed on understanding the important aspects of genetics and population biology that impact the management and protection of species and populations of conservation concern. The course will also examine the theory and practice of reserve design and other conservation measures used in a variety of situations worldwide.

Students interested in Ecology and Conservation Biology should take a prescribed set of courses pointing them toward getting further knowledge in this sub-discipline of biology. Preparation for many careers is advanced by coursework in ecology and conservation, e.g. environmental law, environmental consulting, conservation biology, and environmental education.

Required Courses:
  1. BIOL 211 Cellular and Molecular Biology (w/lab)
  2. BIOL 212 Organism and Population Biology (w/lab)
Four among the following Five Course:
  1. BIOL 240 General Ecology
  2. BIOL 307 Marine Biology
  3. BIOL 340 Conservation Biology
  4. BIOL 402 Microbial Ecology
  5. BIOL 438 Freshwater Ecology (w/lab) 

Current Ecology/Conservation Biology faculty:

Dr. Thomas Smith. Professor Smith received his BS in Environmental Biology from Plymouth State University and his Ph.D. from the University of Louisville. Dr. Smith’s research interests surround aquatic biology, population and community ecology, speciation and the study of aquatic ecosystem health. His current work involves the study of algal biology, taxonomy and ecology, particularly that of cyanobacteria.

Dr. Ernesto Quintero. Professor Quintero received a B.S. in Marine Biology from California State University, Long Beach, and his Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Maryland, College Park. Dr. Quintero’s research interests focus on the microbial ecology of heterotropic bacteria in aquatic environments. This research centers on methods for the improvement of water quality and the production of bioactive secondary metabolites by marine/estuarine bacteria as possible new therapeutic agents.