Chance of a lifetime to intern or study in the USA

Tuesday 10 September 2013

Royal Horticultural Society and The Garden Club of America Interchange Fellowship opens doors to top careers

The Royal Horticultural Society is launching its annual search to find the next great British horticulturist, landscape architect, plant scientist or environmentalist to spend a year in the United States of America.

The coveted RHS/GCA Interchange Fellowship Programme, which is run in partnership with The Garden Club of America, gives one person a unique opportunity to intern or study in the USA, developing skills, knowledge and experience while building invaluable contacts throughout the horticultural world.

The Programme is open to British university graduates, (or final-year students), with a degree in horticulture, landscape architecture, botany, plant sciences or environmental studies, and to student horticulturist looking for an opportunity to learn about American horticultural practices.

Graduates wishing to apply will have two options:

1. To undertake the first year of a Masters course in any field related to horticulture, landscape architecture, plant sciences or environmental studies, at a university in the USA, or

2. To undertake a 12-month highly structured, stimulating and exciting practical internship programme in ornamental horticulture, education, library science or marketing and public relations at Longwood Gardens, Pennsylvania.

Option two will be available to student horticulturists.

Current RHS/GCA Interchange Fellow Ronan Watson said: “After arriving in North Carolina in August 2012 I was taken aback by the sheer diversity of opportunity the Interchange Fellowship year offered. I met some truly fantastic people, got involved in a wealth of rewarding landscape and horticultural projects and explored some of America’s most magnificent gardens.”

“The RHS/GCA Interchange Fellowship was without a doubt one of the most rewarding years of my life. For anyone interested in applying all I can say is jump in and don’t look back”.

2011 RHS/GCA Interchange Fellow Alex Summers, now Glasshouse Supervisor at Cambridge University Botanic Garden said: “The opportunity to intern at Longwood Gardens and experience horticulture as an international industry has proved to be both personally and professionally rewarding. It provided a different perspective to the training gained in the UK and this has been of great benefit in my current position”.

Many Fellows have gone on to secure senior positions in high-profile organisations including Jane Knight, Landscape Architect, at the Eden Project, and Nigel Dunnett, Professor of Planting Design & Vegetation Technology and Director of The Green Roof Centre, at the University of Sheffield.

The RHS/GCA Interchange Fellowship for the Masters covers:

• Up to £350 to cover University application costs
• Cost of sitting the Graduate Record Examination
• Cost of visa application
• Cost of return travel to the USA
• Cost of tuition, accommodation, subsistence, travel, books and study material

For the Internship it covers:

• Cost of return travel to the USA
• Cost of visa application
• Housing
• Salary
• Funds for extra travel, lodging, fees and registration for up to two conferences/garden visits related to area of study

Full details including application forms for the Interchange Fellowship are available on the RHS website at:  


Notes to editors

For more information, please contact Garfield Myrie in the RHS Press Office on 020 7821 3060 or email

About the RHS
The Royal Horticultural Society was founded in 1804 by Sir Joseph Banks and John Wedgwood for the encouragement and improvement of the science, art and practice of horticulture. We held our first flower shows in 1820, were granted a Royal Charter in 1861 and acquired RHS Garden Wisley, our flagship garden, in 1903. From our first meetings in a small room off London’s Piccadilly, we have grown to become the world’s largest gardening charity.

Today the RHS is committed to providing a voice for all gardeners. We are driven by a simple love of plants and a belief that gardeners make the world a better place. 209 years on we continue to safeguard and advance the science, art and practice of horticulture, creating displays that inspire people to garden. In all aspects of our work we help gardeners develop by sharing our knowledge of plants, gardens and the environment.

RHS membership is for anyone with an interest in gardening. Support the RHS and secure a healthy future for gardening. For more information call: 0845 130 4646, or visit  

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262



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About the RHS

The RHS believes that gardening improves the quality of life and that everyone should have access to great garden experiences. As a charity we help to bring gardening into people's lives and support gardeners of all levels and abilities; whether they are expert horticulturists or children who are planting seeds for the very first time.

RHS membership is for anyone with an interest in gardening. Support the RHS and secure a healthy future for gardening. For more information call: 0845 130 4646, or visit

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262