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Collection Digitization Internship in the U.S. National Herbarium



The Department of Botany manages the U.S. National Herbarium at the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution.  This collection contains over 5 million botanical specimens that are important for a variety of research and scientific interests.  Many different methods of digitization are employed by the department as we move towards digitizing the entire collection.  We are looking for an intern(s) interested in learning about the different techniques we use to achieve this monumental goal.  These techniques include: a rapid capture workflow, crowdsourcing, and tradition inventory methods.  The intern will experience using all three approaches to record creation, and work with specimens from a variety of plant families.

Tasks Include:

  • Creating new specimen records in EMu.
  • Updating and editing catalog records in EMu.
  • Imaging specimens for Smithsonian Transcription Center projects.
  • Reviewing and editing transcription data for import into EMu.
    • For interns interested in geography, this can include reviewing locality transcriptions for our more challenging or vague specimen labels.

QUALIFICATIONS: An interest in natural history collections and digitization.  Keen attention to detail.  Ability to safely handle fragile specimens.


  • Collections management procedures for herbarium specimens.
  • Information management through use of our database of record, EMu.
  • Multiple digitization techniques, including a rapid capture workflow.

TIMETABLE: We are looking for an intern(s) who can commit to 8 – 12 weeks for 16-24 hours a week.


Name: Laura Tancredi

Phone: 202-633-0967

E-mail: tancredil@si.edu