UCLA Graduate Research Grants

The La Kretz Center supports field and laboratory-based research projects that address fundamental problems with direct management implications for conservation science in California.

For the 2013-2014 academic year, the La Kretz Center is proud to fund nine outstanding graduate student projects for a total of $10,000. The La Kretz graduate student grant program funds research that addresses important issues in basic environmental sciences amd simultaneously fulfills our mission of working to preserve California’s biological and ecological diversity. To learn more about the projects and students that we fund, follow the links below to a short summary of each project.

Morton La Kretz

The La Kretz Center’s graduate student research grants program is made possible by the generosity of Morton La Kretz, UCLA alumnus and philanthropist.

UCLA Graduate Research Grants 2013-2014

Awardee Department Project Title Summary
Brenton Spies EEB The small coastal lagoons associated with the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation area: closure dynamics, faunal assessment, restoration potential, and endangered species recovery Project Info
Erin Tofelmier EEB Patterns of divergence along a gradient of urbanization in the southern alligator lizard, Elgaria multicarinata Project Info
Evan McCartney-Melstad EEB Using Landscape Genetics to Predict Effects of Pollution on a Threatened California Amphibian  Project Info / Video
Jeffrey Lee EEB Comparative study of artificial light pollution, noise pollution, and other novel sources of anthropogenic stress on urban-dwelling bird communities Project Info
Katherine Glover Geography Understanding past linkages between native vegetation and fire regime in the San Bernardino Project Info
Kevin Neal EEB Landscape genomics of the western spadefoot toad, Spea hammondii, in Proctor Valley, California Project Info
Marissa Caringella EEB The mechanistic influence of traits on response to climate change in California alpine plants Project Info
Rachel Chock EEB Effects of competition on reintroduction success of the endangered Pacific pocket mouse Project Info / Video
Gary Bucciarelli EEB The effect of invasive crayfish on tetrodotoxin levels in California newts within and between watersheds throughout the Santa Monica Mountains Project Info

UCLA Graduate Research Grants 2012-2013

Awardee Department Project Title Summary
Lauren Nicole Brown Geography A Long-term Vegetation Reconstruction of Mugu Lagoon, Ventura County
Gary Bucciarelli EEB The effect of invasive crayfish on tetrodotoxin levels in California newts within and between watersheds throughout the Santa Monica Mountains
Marissa Caringella EEB Improving prediction of climate change impacts and conservation of alpine plants by including mechanistic influence of traits on modeled responses
Rachel Chock EEB Effects of competition on reintroduction success of the endangered Pacific pocket mouse
Devaughn Fraser EEB Assessing the exposure risk and effects of insecticides on free ranging bats
Grace John EEB Conserving resources by quantifying plant water use and drought tolerance for the Los Angeles urban ecosystem
John Mering Earth and Space Sciences Changes in the water budget of the Mojave and the drying out of the Southwest: New constraints from the study of ancient deposits
Zachary Schakner EEB Startling Sea Lions: A Possible Solution for Southern California Fishermen
Katherine Willis Geography Field validation of baseline land cover maps for SoCA coastal National Parks