Oxydendrum arboreum leaves

The University of North Carolina
A Department of the North Carolina Botanical Garden


The Mary McKee Felton Herbarium Internship Fund
at the University of North Carolina Herbarium


Hannah Meeler, 2012 Felton Intern in the Herbarium

I am a rising senior at UNC-Chapel Hill and I am studying environmental science and biology. I am focusing on ecology & plant biology, as I aspire to be a botanist! Working in the herbarium has been an amazing experience so far and I am looking forward to the rest of the summer. I am doing so many different things each day: databasing plant specimens, filing them, and making digital photographs of some of them.

Day-to-day herbarium tasks are proving to be an excellent way to familiarize myself with hundreds of different plant species from all over the world. I am learning to look at a genus and immediately know which family it belongs to (and where that family is located in the herbarium!), and to appreciate the history of the name changes of plants. There are also many botanists around to ask for advice and learn from (about both plants and life)!

I am currently working to create a webpage for the herbarium to showcase the violets of North Carolina, since they are so lovely, but so tricky to identify.  I am also getting a chance to be outdoors looking at live plants.  I am collaborating with Dr. Robert Peet in the UNC-CH Biology Department to document the flora of Redlair Farm & Forest.  The Plant Conservation Program, Catawba Lands Conservancy, and private landowners are working to preserve this significant natural area in Gaston County, NC.  In mid-July will participate in the Carolina Vegetation Survey PULSE 2012B event to document the flora of north-central Piedmont South Carolina.  I have gotten a scholarship to attend the 2012 Cullowhee Native Plant Conference at Western Carolina University. 

I will continue to fight the good fight for getting the plants taken care of and filed for the rest of the summer, while learning a lot along the way. I am so thankful to have the opportunity to this during the summer and to be working around such great people every day. I plan to continue volunteering in the herbarium throughout my senior year.


Friends, classmates and colleagues of Mary McKee Felton (1917 – 2001) are honoring her and her years of service to the herbarium and the university community by establishing an endowment account to fund an internship in the herbarium. This internship supports employment of a student for a semester in the UNC Herbarium. Students may apply or be nominated by faculty and selections will be made by the Herbarium administration. To make a contribution or to obtain more information, please contact Charlotte Jones-Roe, Assistant Director for Development at the North Carolina Botanical Garden at 919-962-9458 or by email at jonesroe@email.unc.edu.

If you are interested in applying for the Mary McKee Felton Herbarium Internship, please contact Alan S. Weakley, Herbarium Curator, at (919) 962-0578 or by email at weakley@unc.edu . Any internship candidate should demonstrate keen interest in the flora of the southeastern United States, have good typing skills, and have an interest in learning how to use and curate herbarium specimens.

Mary McKee Felton

Past Mary McKee Felton Interns:
(to see the results of the project, click on the link within the project name)

2003: Lisa Giencke
Project: To database and create distribution maps of the ferns and fern allies of the Southeastern United States

2006:  Marylou Kidd
Project:  Annotate, database, and correctly re-file all specimens of Andropogon worldwide according to the most current nomenclature and taxonomic concepts.

2010:  Kristie Wendelberger
Project:  We’ve all heard the adage that “a picture is worth a thousand words.”  Felton Intern Kristie Wendelberger is taking that adage another step, and replacing strings of descriptive text with simple, attractive, informative maps.  She is creating single species occurrence maps to be inserted into the Flora of the Southern & Mid-Atlantic States by Herbarium Curator Dr. Alan Weakley.  She is creating a map for each of the 7,000 species in the Flora.  The information depicted in these maps will quickly provide the reader important details about the species’ presence, abundance, and states as a native or exotic plant.

2011:  Kevan Chuang
Project:  Basics of herbarium curation, focusing on 19th century specimens given to NCU by Jesup Herbarium of Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.

2012:  Hannah Meeler
Project:  Basics of herbarium curation, focusing on Violaceae of the Southeastern United States.



Curriculum in Ecology                 North Carolina Botanical Garden               Biology Department
Curriculum                               North Carolina                                 UNC

   In Ecology                              Botanical Garden                   Biology Department


University of North Carolina Herbarium
CB# 3280, Coker Hall
University of North Carolina
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3280
phone: (919) 962-6931
fax: (919) 962-6930
email: mccormickATSIGNunc.edu  

Last Updated: 9 July 2012