Rachel Holland – Horticulture Intern 2016

I had an incredible summer as an intern at the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens. This experience was once in a lifetime, not only do you have the privilege to work in the beautiful Gore Range. But you are given the amazing opportunity tolive in Vail, Colorado and explore the area. During my time as an intern at the gardens, I learned so many new species of alpine plants. I had never been to Colorado before and the plants were completely unknown to me. Nick was continuously answering my questions and helped me learn so much about this new environment. My favorite part about the internship was going into the field and collecting specimens and seeds for the Bureau of Land Management. It was so cool to do real life field work and contribute to conservation by collecting the seeds of these alpine plants.

When I first came to Vail, I was really nervous to be away from home and to be in a place where I knew nobody. By the end of the summer, I was dreading going home because I did not want to leave such an amazing place with so many great people. Although I was sad to leave Vail, I am now determined to move back out there to continue to explore the great state of Colorado. My internship at the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens not only gave me experience, it gave me a new view on life. This internship opened my eyes to the amazing things life has to offer me. I hope that the next interns use this opportunity to not only learn about alpine plants and conservation, but also use it as a learning opportunity for life.

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