BSA Science Education and Outreach
This is an online version of the brochure "Careers in Botany" distributed by the Botanical Society of America. Real Careers - Great Choices! BSA members talk about their jobs...
Dr. David Spooner
University of Wisconsin
An adventure, this is my job!!
Ever since I could remember all I ever wanted to be was a botanist. As a child I pretty much lived in the various woods near our home in southwestern Ohio, and knew every trail and creek bed by heart.
Dr. Mudassir Asrar Zaidi
University of Balochistan
A love of flowers and plants
As far as I remember in my early life at the age of five onwards I used to say that I can’t live without flowers and plants. Later I started counting their sepals, petals without damaging them through which I developed a passion for research.
Dr. Marshall Sundberg
Emporia State University
I entered college knowing that I wanted to be a high school biology teacher and was particularly fascinated with animal anatomy and physiology. Then I took the Biology of Vascular Plants course. Boy, was I in for a surprise!
Dr. Jenny Xiang
North Carolina State University
An International Journey to a Botany Career
It is hard to believe that with a childhood dream of becoming an astronaut, I end up as a botanist with a passion. Unexpectedly, this aspiration was overtaken by a growing interest in biology after I entered college. The biology department opened a whole new world for me.
Dr. Jack Horner
Iowa State University
Reflections of a Happy Botanist
During that year I also took two advanced botany courses in plant morphology and vascular plant anatomy. The "plant" courses and Professor Howard Arnott who was teaching them, literally "turned me on" to the study of plants.
Dr. Scott Mori
New York Botanical Garden
How I became a Tropical Botanist
By the time I reached high school I had developed an interest in natural history because of my experiences camping with the Boy Scouts and hunting for rabbits and pheasants with my father, an uncle, and a neighbor.
Dr. Sherwin Carlquist
Happily Retired from Teaching
Being a Professor of Botany
Being a professor of botany/biology is wonderful because of the opportunities it offers - being able to share one's enthusiasms with students, designing new courses, having the opportunity to do field work, watching one's field of specialty change and grow, doing research, and spending one's life in contact with the green world.
Dr. Joseph Armstrong
Illinois State University
Botany as a career: Still having fun
It is much harder to decide when I decided to pursue botany as a career, but it happened some time during my final two years of undergraduate work after I fell under the influence of three botanists at SUNY Oswego (Jim Seago, Lee Marsh, and Hank Spang).
Dr. Alex C. Wiedenhoeft
Center for Wood Anatomy Research, Forest Products Laboratory, Forest Service, USDA
Confessions Of An Accidental Wood Anatomist
It seems strange to me now to reflect and see my path as accidental (it would be better to say serendipitous), but my trip to wood anatomy was nothing if not filled with chance.