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Volunteer News
spacerby Madelaine Zadik

   This past January the Botanic Garden harvested a new crop of volunteers who just completed three days of intensive training at Smith. This enthusiastic group joins our dedicated corps of volunteers who offer their time to the Botanic Garden in a variety of capacities. This past year volunteers worked over 1400 hours, including giving guided tours to 95 groups. Offering guided tours to the public on this scale simply would not be possible without these committed volunteers. This past June the gardens at the President's House were featured as part of the annual Northampton Garden Tour sponsored by the Friends of Forbes Library.

Volunteers were on hand to answer questions and provide information about the gardens, including some of the history recently unearthed in the garden journals of the Kneeland family. Over 500 visitors passed through the gardens that day! Additionally, volunteers work on the Site Index Seminum, our international seed exchange; provide hospitality for Botanic Garden events; staff our bulb and mum shows; and provide general office support. This year they will also be helping to count visitors to the Conservatory.    The work of this devoted group is truly invaluable to the Botanic Garden. It would not be possible for us to do as much as we do without these extraordinary individuals who give so generously of their time. Many many thanks. decoration

Education Programs
spacerby Madelaine Zadik
Plant Image 
    We are particularly excited this season about our new and continuing programs. The calendar of the Botanic Garden is filled with teacher workshops, school visits and guided tours, volunteer training and monthly meetings, workshops for children during reunion weekends, tours for alumnae groups, and more. To a large degree these programs have been made possible by the Stanley Smith Horticultural Trust, which, we are proud to announce, has renewed our grant for a third year.
    Sixty teachers have completed our training workshops, and they have left the Botanic Garden filled with enthusiasm and new ideas for how to incorporate the plant sciences into their curricula. Many return to the Botanic Garden with their classes well prepared for tours of our facilities. The teachers come to us hungry for information, and it is gratifying to see that we can have such a positive effect. The grant has also provided money for transportation, thus enabling many more schools to bring their students for field trips to the Botanic Garden.
    The Botanic Garden and the Smith College Museum of Art have entered into a new relationship. Together we have created an innovative program, providing complementary tours for school groups visiting the College. At the Botanic Garden we developed tours on Japanese Plants of the Smith College Botanic Garden and Plants of the Ancient Roman World to coincide with exhibits at the Museum, and the Museum is offering a Nature in Art tour and teacher workshop. Teachers are provided with pre- and post-visit curriculum materials. This collaboration created a wonderful synergy, reinforcing on many levels the children's learning on a given theme.
    Through the funding provided us this year by the Stanley Smith Horticultural Trust, we will take an analytical look at outreach education, develop an Education Master Plan, and build a foundation for managing the educational activities of the Botanic Garden for the future.

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