Living Collections Fellowship

Living Collections Fellowship

The application process for 2019 is now open. Please click here to apply.

The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University is seeking candidates for its Living Collections Fellowship and invites developing leaders in the field of living collections management to apply. The Living Collections Fellow (LCF) is part of the Arboretum’s Living Collections team and supports significant initiatives in Curation, Horticulture, and Plant Production. Equally important, it affords a rising public gardens professional the opportunity to closely work alongside leaders in the field at one of the world’s most celebrated plant collections. The LCF is assigned a large-scale project(s) that spans the duration of the experience.

This next LCF will be a member of the Plant Production team, spearheading the creation of a plant introduction program. The LCF will assist in implementing a contemporary evaluation, promotion, and distribution system for novel and noteworthy selections growing within the collections. The LCF will be responsible for leading the formation of a steering committee, creating an evaluation procedure, assisting in the selection of candidate plants, developing propagation protocols, and structuring a promotion and distribution model to best inform and serve the industry.

In addition, the LCF will work on other significant Plant Production initiatives as part of the larger operation. These projects may include researching and implementing clonal propagation methods (including tissue culture) for recalcitrant taxa, re-acquiring and propagating important and historic Arnold Arboretum lineages, performing propagation research related to the Living Collections Campaign – a ten-year collections development plan, and recommending improvements to the current production scheme with regards to container and overwintering options.

The LCF will also work closely alongside the Living Collections department managers and the other LCF to support special projects across all three units.



Applications are sought from early-career individuals with a degree (MS preferred) in horticulture, plant science, plant ecology, or related disciplines, and who have chosen public horticulture and/or botanical garden management as a career path. Applicants should be well-positioned to conduct independent project-based assignments. Preference will be given to candidates with a working knowledge of plant propagation and production. Applicants are expected to be fluent in English.


Fellowship Details:

The Fellowship provides an annual stipend of $48,000, and as an employee of Harvard University, the LCF is eligible for health insurance benefits.

The LCF is expected to engage fully in the professional activities of the Arnold Arboretum and to work collaboratively with Arboretum staff on other institutional efforts. She/he is encouraged to participate as an instructor for Arnold Arboretum education programs and to write for Arnoldia, the Arboretum’s quarterly magazine.

The fellowship is typically awarded for two years, pending a satisfactory progress report during the first year. The successful candidate is expected to begin by spring/summer 2019.


Application Process:

The Fellowship is awarded through a competitive review process. To be considered, applicants should submit the following in PDF format via the Online Application.

  • Cover letter
  • Statement of purpose (two pages maximum). The statement of purpose should clearly depict the applicant’s (i) interest in the Living Collections Fellowship at the Arnold Arboretum; (ii) intended career path in living collections management and how the Fellowship furthers those objectives; and (iii) proven successful project management abilities and how those skills will benefit the work of the Living Collections team.
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Three letters of recommendation


Application Deadline:

February 10, 2019 (applicants are encouraged to apply early – applications are reviewed upon submission)