Justin Luong Ph.D Candidate

Curriculum Vitae

Academic History

Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Studies, 2017-2022
University of California Santa Cruz, CA
Research Focus: Novel strategies for understanding restoration outcomes facing climate change
Advising Committee: Dr. Michael Loik (Primary), Dr. Karen Holl (Co-advised), Dr. Daniel Press
External Committee: Dr. Katharine Suding (University of Colorado, Boulder)

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies, 2010-2014
University of California, Santa Barbara, CA
Focus: Restoration Ecology

Teaching Experience

Environmental Studies
University of California Santa Cruz, 2018 - Present
Position: Teaching Assistant

Biology: Ecology and Evolution
University of California Santa Cruz, 2018
Position: Teaching Assistant

The Cheadle Center of Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration
UC Santa Barbara, 2015-2017
1) Position: Field Restoration Ecologist and Coordinator
Teaching Goals: 1. Demonstrate the application of ecological concepts in the field and real world applicability and 2. Teach natural history of coastal ecosystem flora and fauna 2) Position: Research Affiliate 2017-Present

Awards and Grants


Professional Experience

California Marine Sanctuary Foundation
Monterey, CA 2020-Present
Consulting Ecologist
Duties: Create and implement a vegetation monitoring plan for a newly designed grassland restoration project that will be used in conjunction with ranching and public access; conduct annual vegetation monitoring of restoration project; analyze soil samples taken using Loss on Ignition to determine soil organic and inorganic carbon

Luong Restoration and Ecology Internship Program
UC Santa Cruz, CA 2018-Present
Research Mentor and Program Administer
Duties: Mentor 3-15 undergraduate students any given school quarter about ecological research; teach students to complete lab techniques and analysis and present their work in a professional research setting; assist students in completing thesis projects and apply for small grants to complete independent research

UC Santa Cruz Science Internship Program
UC Santa Cruz, CA 2018-Present (summers only)
Research Mentor
Duties: Mentor 3-4 high school students about ecological research; teach students to complete lab techniques and analysis and present their work in a professional research setting

Norris Center for Natural History
UC Santa Cruz, CA 2018-Present
Graduate Student Researcher
Duties: Worked on various projects and tasks; for 3 months, I took high-quality macro-photos of insects for databasing and digitization; for 6 months I assisted in developing a public exhibit focused on “Santa Cruz Naturalists” with a specific focus on diversity, equity and inclusion within the Santa Cruz Naturalist community; for 3 months I managed two internship programs: one based on researching sensitive species within the local bioregion and another focused on decolonizing natural history museum practices

Watsonville Wetland Watch
Freedom, CA 2018-Present (Spring and Summers)
Consulting Ecologist
Duties: Conduct annual vegetation monitoring and statistics for restoration sites completed by Watsonville Wetland Watch from sites that were retired from agriculture

Younger Lagoon Reserve
UC Santa Cruz, 2017-Present (Spring only)
Graduate Student Researcher
Duties: Conduct annual compliance monitoring and reporting; report on reserve research activities; assist and create videos for the online internship education program; assist with repairs on research designs

University of California, Santa Cruz – Chancellor’s Office
UC Santa Cruz, 2019-2020
Graduate Student Researcher
Duties: Develop a campus grassland prioritization and management plan to be used in future development and planning efforts as well as to further conservation efforts on campus; vegetation and wildlife of survey campus grasslands; interviews with relevant stakeholders such as planners, natural resource managers, faculty and community members; conduct a campus wide survey about campus grasslands; analyze existing long term data of campus grasslands

Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration
UC Santa Barbara, 2013-2017
Positions: Student Worker (1.5 yrs) – Restoration Assistant (0.5 yrs) – Field Coordinator (1.5 yrs)
Duties: Oversee grassland and wetland restoration activities; coordinate and train students and volunteers; teach non- and native plant ID; conduct endangered species research (Lupinus nipomensis); collect annual vegetation monitoring data; generate reports on grassland restoration and endangered species recovery

Boards and Committees

Environmental Studies Grant Review Committee
2018 – Present

USFWS Nipomo Lupine Endangered Species Recovery Team
2019 – Present

Mark’s Ranch Technical Advisory Committee
2020 – Present

UCSC Ken Norris Natural History Center Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee
2020 – Present

UCSC Environmental Studies BIPOC Resilience Graduate Committee
2020 – Present

California Native Grassland Association
2021 - Present


California Native Plant Society (CNPS) Member

The Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration (CCBER) Research Affiliate

California Botanical Society Member

California Native Grassland Association (CNGA) Member, Director-at-Large

Northern California Botanists (NCB) Member

Society for Ecological Restoration, California (SERCAL) Member

Sigma Xi Member

American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Member

Ecological Society of America (ESA) Member

Entomological Society of America (ESA) Member