Home Banner


We are delighted to welcome you to the FUERTE program, a new program for undergraduates at UC Santa Barbara. Funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation, FUERTE is organized by faculty members and researchers in EEMB, and is meant to welcome you into the exciting world of conservation science, marine biology and the exciting ways research in the outdoors can open up new worlds and career options. We know the COVID19 situation has changed the way we are operating at the university, but we have a lot of exciting things ahead and we invite you to explore the FUERTE site and get involved! Join us!

 Director Messages

Welcome to FUERTE

Welcome to the FUERTE webpage. We’re excited to start this new program at UC Santa Barbara and hope you will be checking in regularly. FUERTE is especially meant for students who are just getting start in college and might want to explore a career in environmental science.

I know it can be really tough to start at a new big university - there is a lot to do! You need to register for classes, figure out how the university works, all the while working to develop a sense of belonging and what you might want to study! And with the COVID19 situation, I know that working remotely all the time does not foster these steps. We need to connect, to learn more about the world and science works, how you might make a contribution to a better future for people and for the planet.

This is where FUERTE can be a help, a foundation and a community to help you learn about a research university, how people do field work and research, and what types of jobs people get. I wanted to create a program that would help bridge students from their Freshman year to research experiences that help you become an environmental scientist. And here, I mean someone who is working on topics that are diverse – ranging from conservation biology to studying impacts of climate change on our food systems. Importantly, FUERTE was inspired by the stories my UCSB students told me - first-generation students, transfer students, students with diverse backgrounds and ethnicities – all sharing the hurdles and challenges they faced in going to college. We created FUERTE to be the bridge from college to a career in science for the environment.

Going forward, we hope that you will join us! We are here for you, and the FUERTE faculty and mentors will be creating regular session this quarter to tell you more, and to listen to you about your interests. Watch this space as more events occur this Fall and into the academic year.

Wishing you a great start to the school year,

Professor Hofmann

Get Involved

Our Welcome Event is scheduled for Wednesday, September 30th! Also, be sure to check out other awesome opportunities and resources provided by the ONDAS Student Center and the Transfer Student Center.


The FUERTE Team is committed to diversity, inclusion, and equity in STEM. As scientists, we believe that diversity, inclusion, equity and representation of people from all backgrounds are integral to conservation, climate science, and environmental justice.

FUERTE is funded by an award from the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF 1953492)

NSF Logo