Dr. Michael Drake

Dr. Michael Drake
Assistant Professor of Environment & Sustainability

Areas of Expertise

  • Conservation Ecology
  • Wildlife Governance
  • Human Dimensions of Wildlife
  • Conservation Economics


  • PhD: Environmental Studies, University of Colorado Boulder, 2021
  • MS: Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology, North Carolina State University, 2016
  • BA: Biology, University of Pennsylvania, 2012


Phone Icon 970-247-6024
Email Icon Email

Media Contact

Our faculty are available to comment on topics related to areas of interest or expertise. If you need further assistance, call Media Relations at 970-247-6073 or email Media Relations.

About Dr. Michael Drake

I am a Korean-American ecologist that grew up in the Pacific Northwest. My life-long love of wildlife has guided my career and research towards investigating pressing issues in contemporary conservation. I view wildlife conservation as a holistic issue, involving governance and social understanding just as much as biological insight. As such, I strive to merge socio-economic and ecological frameworks into my teaching and research. Previously, I completed my PhD at the University of Colorado Boulder in 2021, where my dissertation work focused on community-based conservation in Southern Africa, and my MS at North Carolina State University in 2016, where I studied human perceptions of coyotes in urban areas. Before entering graduate school, I spent time working in Yosemite National Park, completed my BA at the University of Pennsylvania, and received a Fulbright research fellowship in Namibia. Outside of the classroom, I enjoy rock climbing, birding, and wildlife photography, all of which afford me more time to think about the connections between humans and wildlife.