From time to time The Friends fund a 12-month Horticulture Bursary or three-month summer studentship.

The purpose of the scheme is to provide practical experience for a recent graduate who wishes to develop a career in botanical horticulture. The student works alongside trained staff in the Garden, so that experience is gained in all aspects of the maintenance and management of a botanic garden.

The student

  • gains experience in a range of practical horticultural skills.
  • takes part in regular plant identification sessions
  • is introduced to computerised plant records, labelling, and herbarium techniques;
  • visits local gardens and areas of natural interest;
  • works with the staff of the Natural History Centre and learn about educational activities, their planning and implementation.
  • attends selected undergraduate courses from the BSc (Plant Biology) curriculum at the University of Aberdeen

The 2015 student was James Gray

The 2014 student was Rachel Spencer. Rachel came to us from Brooksby College Leicestershire with Diplomas in Horticulture and Environmental Conservation. Rachel has wide practical experience in the landscape industry including working on organic farms in Oregon USA; plant nursery glasshouse work; garden maintenance for commercial and residential properties; as 'Master Composter' promoting home composting; wetland management, hedge-laying, tree felling and tree planting and dry-stone walling. Rachel went on to work for University of Aberdeen Estates.

The 2009-2010 student was Kate Barnard