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GCA Scholarships Recipients: The Garden Club of America and the Royal Horticultural Society Interchange Fellowships


2017 Polly Stevens

The Garden Club of American Interchange Fellow, Polly Stevens will receive her diploma in horticultural practice from the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) based at RHS Garden, Wisley. This fall, she will be a master’s student in landscape architecture at Cornell University. Interested in urban horticultural design and park redevelopment, she envisions cities of the future as lush, green environments where plants grow in every possible space. Her career path was inspired by her background in interactive art, along with internships at Kew Gardens and a year-long placement at Audley End House and Gardens and various horticultural volunteer activities. She is excited to return to the US, and fondly remembers a childhood vacation to the West Coast, where she was awed by the redwood forests and golden beaches. In 2014 she interned at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden.

2017 Eva Steinberg

The Royal Horticultural Society Interchange Fellow, Eva Steinberg, a graduate in anthropology, biology, and environmental studies from Wesleyan University, is passionate about sustainable agricultural practices and the role that seeds can play in preserving biodiversity. She is interested in collecting and sharing native seeds and in biodiversity cultivation, eventually working with the Millennium Seed Bank in England. Her most recent research examined modes of seed preservation among farmers in the South, including seed saving as a mode of cultural and biodiversity preservation.

2016 Molly Hendry

Molly Hendry received a Master’s in Landscape Architecture from Auburn University. She plans to use her time in the United Kingdom as the RHS Interchange Fellow to further her study of plants and horticulture.  This experience will aid Molly in her goal of bridging the gap between designers and horticulturalists in order to show that gardens are not just collections of plants, but can be choreographed experiences that unfold as people move through designed spaces.

2016 Maggie Tran

Maggie Tran transitioned from a fine art career to the world of horticulture after a mentor taught her how to grow her own food. One taste of this new world and she was hooked.  After receiving her Diploma in Horticulture, Maggie embarked on a series of garden placements that would be the envy of any gardener, from gardens in England, Wales and Scotland to France and a short stint in Oman where she helped to teach women about horticulture. She will be leaving the RHS Wisley Garden to begin a year in the U.S. at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania.

2015 William Hembree

The Royal Horticultural Society Interchange Fellow, William “Will” Hembree, majored in Horticulture and is a 2015 graduate of the University of Georgia. Will is interested in a career in public horticulture and, in addition to being an Eagle Scout, has received numerous awards including the University of Georgia Presidential Scholarship, the UGA Department of Horticulture Award for an outstanding junior and multiple UGA College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences Travel and Research scholarships. He will travel to London late this summer to begin his fellowship. Through-out the year he will work and study at many RHS Garden properties and the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew and Edinburgh.

2015 Charles Ive

The Garden Club of America Interchange Fellow, Charles “Charlie” Ive, has worked and studied horticulture in many varied gardens, from New Zealand to the Isles of Scilly, located off the southwestern tip of the Cornish peninsula of Great Britain. Currently, he is working at the RHS Garden, Rosemoor. He will arrive in the United States in early autumn to begin a year-long work and study program at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania. Charlie is a keen sportsman and likes to travel. He has visited gardens in South Africa, Singapore and Australia and will travel to gardens in our country during his internship.

2014 Ashley Edwards

The Garden Club of America Interchange Fellow, Ashley Edwards, a recipient of the Kew Diploma in Horticulture, chose a year-long practical study program at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania interspersed with travel to Florida, Arizona, Missouri and the Pacific Coast.

2014 Jonathan Henn

The Royal Horticultural Society Interchange Fellow, Jon Henn, a Fulbright and National Geographic Young Explorer’s grant recipient, graduated with Distinction in Biology and Magna Cum Laude in 2012 from St. Olaf College in Minnesota. An avid violin player, Jon’s interests lie in attempting to increase the role botanical gardens can play in helping to restore ecosystems around the globe. 

2013 Terry Huang

The Royal Horticultural Society Interchange Fellow, Terry, is a 2011 graduate of the University of Washington with a major in Plant Biology.  Terry completed internships with the University of Washington Botanic Gardens in Seattle and the Smithsonian Gardens in Washington, D.C.  During his 10-month program, Terry worked in many public gardens, including Wisley, Kew and Tresco Abbey Gardens.

2013 Katarzyna Kasia Goral

The Garden Club of America Interchange Fellow, Katarzyna (Kasia) Goral. A British citizen, Kasia was born in Poland and holds a Master's degree in Russian Philology from Silesian University in Poland, a Master's degree in Translation Studies from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and received her certificate and degree in Horticulture with Plantsmanship from  the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.  Kasia chose the year-long practical study program at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania and travelled to Florida and Colorado.



Scholarship Opportunities Abound

The GCA offers 28 merit-based scholarships and fellowships, awarding more than $330,000 to 86 scholars in 2017.

For example, the GCA Fellowship in Ecological Restoration offers an $8,000 annual grant for graduate study and research at a leading accredited university in the United States. Fields of study of past recipients have ranged from forestry to applied plant sciences to ecology and evolutionary biology.

Read more about the four 2017 recipients.