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Student is on her way to the Smithsonian

May 2, 2012 7:21 AM

Jessica Dame, a graduate assistant in the Hollings Special Collections Library, has been selected for a summer internship with the Archives of American Gardens within the Smithsonian Gardens in Washington, D.C.

In the Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections at USC, Dame has had a wide range of duties, including working in the Reading Room, processing, stack maintenance, in-house conservation and digitization.

“I was able to gain confidence through processing materials and learning about rare books collections and working at the reference desk,” said Dame, who graduates in May with a master’s degree in library and information science. “I did a condition survey of the Scottish Literature Collection, and I cataloged a series of girls’ books. I also got the chance to digitize a 14th-century missal.”

At the Smithsonian this summer, Dame said she “will be assisting with processing the collections, cataloging images, and doing outreach through blogging.”

The competitive internship is open to anyone who wants to apply and who has an interest in archives, gardening and botanical studies. The application process includes writing essays to the Archive of American Gardens and the Garden Club of America.

Originally from Hampton, Virginia, Dame spent a summer as a horticulture intern at the Virginia Living Museum in Newport News. “I’ve always had an interest in botany, and in biology and the sciences, so working there was a cool opportunity to learn the native plants and animal habitats of Virginia,” she said. “I’m sure I’ll learn even more about these fields this summer.”