Ernest Lab Info for Prospective Students

If the research areas of the lab interest you, you should feel free to e-mail Morgan about your general research interests (I understand you probably don’t know exactly what you would like to do—I’m mainly trying to understand what your primary interests are) and education background (degrees, relevant courses, GRE scores, etc). Application information for Utah State University can be found at

Student Support

Support is available through the department in the form of Teaching Assistantships . In addition, there is a Research Assistantship in my lab that to work on the rodent census for the Portal Project (see research).

All students applying to work with me are encouraged to apply for EPA STARR fellowships ( and NSF predoctoral fellowships ( These are great pools of money that free  graduate students from the obligations of RAs and TAs and allow them to focus solely on their research. Some support is also available through the USU Ecology Center for students further into their graduate career (see below).

Mentoring Philosophy

I strongly believe that the best way to train young scientists is to treat them like colleagues. Graduate students develop their own research projects and my role is to guide, advise, instill enthusiasm, and commiserate.

While my focus is mainly on mammals, an interest in mammals is not necessary to join the lab—only an interest in broad, synthetic questions.

Applying to USU

USU Biology does not have an application deadline, however, I strongly encourage prospective students to pretend there is a January 15th deadline. I decide in advance how many students I will take each year. If I fill those positions before you have applied...well, you get the idea.

The Biology Dept has implemented an on-line pre-application. You must complete this before officially applying to the University! The pre-application is very similar to the university application, so it shouldn’t be much extra work. This and all other information about applying to grad school at USU can be found at

A M.S. or Ph.D in Ecology is coordinated by the USU Ecology Center. More information about the Ecology Graduate Program can be found at:  . The Ecology Center is a great resource for ecologists at USU and sponsors a fantastic, student organized Ecology Seminar series every year.