Graduate Study at NREL
Greetings, prospective graduate students, and thank you for your interest in exploring the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory (NREL) at Colorado State University. NREL is an internationally acclaimed, interdisciplinary research laboratory focusing on advanced research in ecosystem ecology. The close-knit community of graduate students and researchers at NREL are immersed in cutting-edge research around the world.
NREL students are funded primarily from research grants that have been awarded to NREL research scientists which fund 40-50 graduate students in any given year. To become a graduate student you will want to find a research advisor within NREL with funding, or work with a research advisor to obtain funding. Below, you will find information on how to become a graduate student and support resources at CSU to help you along the way.
- Graduate Research at the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory (NREL)
- Resources in Fort Collins
- Resources for Diverse Graduate Students
- Diversity Support Groups
NREL students include those at the M.S., Ph.D., and post-doc levels. Students must apply and be admitted to a CSU graduate program. NREL scientists are affiliated with and many teach graduate classes in the Graduate Degree Program in Ecology, departments within the Warner College of Natural Resources, Soil and Crop Sciences, the Department of Biology and the Department of Anthropology. If you are interested in working with NREL scientists for graduate study, contact individual researchers whose interests match yours.
NREL has over 30 research scientists, also referred to as “Principal Investigators” or “PIs”, who can act as advisors for graduate students. While you’ll see the four major areas of research for NREL on the home page, there are many additional research areas listed on PI’s web sites. You can find each PI’s brief bio and research interests listed in the NREL Directory (the PIs are the ones with ‘ Dr.’ in front of their names). Most professors also have a personal website; these pages will often contain links to further information on their research. When you find a PI with similar interests send them an email with “Prospective Graduate Student” in the subject line. Please feel free to contact PIs you might be interested in working with. At a minimum, we suggest your initial contact e-mail should contain the following:
- A cover letter (or e-mail) describing your academic and research background, your research interests, and why you think you would be a good fit for a given PIs Lab
- A copy of your resume. Including academic activities, publications, outreach, scientific activities, and other interests
- A copy of your transcripts or list of courses and your GPA
- Copies of any pertinent publications you are an author on
PIs receive a lot of emails from perspective graduate students. Please give them a few days to get back to you.
- Graduate School – Start the application process here.
- Admissions Office – The Graduate School will send your application to the Admissions office for approval.
- The Graduate Center for Diversity and Access The Graduate Center for Diversity and Access is committed to providing an environment that supports all forms of diversity. We invite you to explore our website and to contact us with your questions (Bonnie Beer/970-491-3702). Students may also learn more about the Graduate Center for Diversity and Access through the Graduate Center’s Student Advisory Board.
- Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Related Sciences (MANRRS) MANRRS promotes academic and professional advancement by empowering minorities in agriculture, natural resources, and related sciences. Learn more about the Colorado State University Chapter of MANRRS by contacting Jenny Soong ( Jennifer.Soong@colostate.edu). Meetings are held the first Tuesday of every month in the Natural Resources Building.
For more complete information on the diverse communities present on CSU's campus, explore the links below.
- Asian/Pacific American Cultural Center
- Black/African American Cultural Center
- CSU Student Diversity/International Organizations
- El Centro Student Services
- Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Resource Center
- Native American Cultural Center
- Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity Student Involvement
- Resources for Disabled Students