National Garden Intern 2012

Kelly Whitson

Kelly was born and raised in Southern California where, in 2002, she received her B.A. in Physical Anthropology from the University of California Santa Barbara. Afterward, she spent a few years in the restaurant industry and a few years as an administrative assistant for a world-renowned engineering firm.

In 2009, Kelly decided to pursue her dreams of attending graduate school and applied to the George Washington University's Museum Studies Program. That year Kelly volunteered at the San Diego Museum of Man, essentially beginning her career in museums.

Kelly moved to DC in 2010 and has been enjoying the city ever since. She has volunteered at the National Museum of Natural History, performing exhibit evaluations, and has been volunteering at United States Botanic Garden since September of 2011, performing various supportive public programming roles like manning both the chocolate and the orchid discovery carts. 

She spent the summer of 2011 interning at Tudor Place Historic House and Garden as a Horticultural Collections Management Intern. During that time she completed Digital Media Project consisting of the digitization and organization of thousands of 35mm slides of the public garden, created a finding aid to assist in research, organized archival garden files and created an index for easy navigation. She took detailed condition reports for 112 trees, assigned accession numbers and entered the data into Past Perfect Museum Catalog Software.  

More recently, Kelly has been interning at the National Museum of American History in the Division of Medicine and Science, helping to catalog, mark and move collections, as well as compiling a small group of objects to be put up on the Smithsonian's Enterprise Digital Asset Network (EDAN).

In her free time, Kelly enjoys reading, yoga, movies, dining, museums, festivals, markets and live shows.

Kelly graduated from GWU on May 19, 2012 and the National Fund was happy to have her spending her summer in the National Garden.  Kelly was an asset to the USBG’s Public Program division. She assisted with HOPS, developed her own tour of the National Garden (National Garden: Historical Perspectives Tour) and worked with the Pollinator Discovery Car by redesigning its Pollinator Matching Game.