Fund-a-Need: Help Us Grow Filoli’s Internship Program in 2020!
Since 1977, Filoli has trained 400 interns who have become leaders in the fields of horticulture, landscape preservation, landscape architecture and public garden management. Over the course of ten weeks, interns receive hands-on, skills-based training and participate in workshops that provide key knowledge important for their future success. Through support from the Woodside-Atherton Garden Club, Hillsborough Garden Club, Atherton Garden Guild and Filoli volunteers, our garden internships have become an essential training ground for those beginning their careers.
Inspired by our former interns’ success, a significant bequest from Mrs. Lurline Roth Coonan and our new Strategic Plan, we are expanding the Internship Program to offer learning opportunities in more disciplines such as Museum Collections Management and Curation, Education, Interpretation and Marketing. Along with four Garden Interns, three additional summer interns from Santa Clara University are assisting staff with mission-driven activities including blueprint digitization, research for the Sally MacBride Nature Center and amplifying Filoli’s voice and presence online and in the community.
Suzanne Legallet, a longtime Filoli member and volunteer, is incredibly committed to the Internship Program. She has been an advocate, supporter and generously provides housing for some of our interns.
“For over 22 years (and more than 40 interns) I have had the pleasure of supporting students and seeing them develop their interest and passion for horticulture, practice hands-on gardening skills and be inspired to stay in the field. Our highly regarded program helps to ensure that we have educated and dedicated horticulturists to work in America’s public gardens, parks, plant propagation, sales, education and landscape management. More intern opportunities at Filoli will be beneficial to many who want to work in historic preservation, education and horticulture.”
Suzanne has pledged a generous initial contribution to be matched by former interns in support of the growing program. Funds will be used to help support the program through 2020. With your help, we can inspire and train the next generation of museum, public garden and nonprofit leaders.
Will you join us?
A Few Stories From Former Filoli Interns…
“I met with [Filoli staff] over my spring break in March 1977 and talked my head off trying to convince them that they needed to start an internship program and that I would love to be one of their first interns. After graduating from UC Davis in 1978, I moved to the Big Island of Hawaii and started a landscape contracting business and, in 1983, become the first woman in Hawaii to receive a landscape contractor’s license. One of my clients was Chuck and Berenice Spalding whose home was built for her mother, Lurline Roth, on the same grounds as the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. Memories of Filoli are some of the finest in my journey of life. it was a path I am grateful I took!”
“I was one of the first interns turned apprentice. I learned professionalism, passion and dedication. Attention to detail at Filoli is hugely important and I’ve carried that over to my career as Conservatory Manager at Longwood Gardens. Now I get to work alongside students from around the globe to expose them to all the aspects of the horticultural field in hopes they become as passionate as I am! Filoli left a lasting impression on me and I hope that I can do that for others as well.”
My spring internship in 2006 was a life-changing experience for me. I was new to the horticulture industry and didn’t know what to do. It was wonderful to feel comfortable being humble and encouraged to ask questions. The Internship Program impacted my career by teaching me the importance of historic preservation, in following best practices in leaving my work in top condition for the next steward. I also developed a solid work ethic focusing on personal accountability by completing tasks and logging activities, reflecting on what went well and areas for improvement. Most importantly, I was influenced by trial and error to develop my pruning skills. As a Greenhouse and Grounds Manager at Cornell AgriTech, I apply what I learned in the gardens by designing our perennial borders similar to Filoli’s, with swaths of color and texture. Thank you for the opportunity to work in Filoli’s beautiful environment. It is wonderful to see the Internship Program flourish and continue to support up and coming people in the horticulture industry.
My time at Filoli was extremely important for me in developing my career in landscape architecture. Without the practical training and guidance I received at Filoli I would not have understood the importance of hands-on horticulture when it comes to designing a garden or landscape. After my apprenticeship, I was able to get a job at Lutsko Associates in San Francisco. I went on to work all over the Bay Area, which was hugely influential for my current style of work: sustainable, indigenous landscapes with water-wise planting and rainwater harvesting systems. Without Filoli, none of this would have happened and I am truly indebted to their commitment and help.
“Filoli provided me with a unique set of horticultural and historical property management skills that continue to support my career today. I’m able to understand a broad set of concepts that continue to help my career path in guest services. I also developed great professional relationships with the staff that I maintain to this day. The experience and support that I had at Filoli has undoubtedly contributed to my success.”
In 2012, I had the pleasure to experience a summer working as an intern at Filoli. Seven years later I still talk about my internship at beautiful Filoli! I absolutely loved the team feeling at Filoli and as an intern, I was instantly welcomed and felt so much support. Rotating through the different gardens and having a chance to work with each Horticulturist and their assistant was one of my favorite parts of the internship. I thought it was an amazing opportunity to learn from some really skilled professionals in my field.
I am now a horticulturist at Cornell Botanic Gardens and Arboretum. I used SO MUCH of what I learned and experienced in my interview to get this position. THANK YOU FILOLI! Without my experience at Filoli, I would have never known how much I loved being a horticulturist in a garden setting each and every day. I am truly blessed and thankful I was able to experience such an incredible internship.
The Filoli Internship Program impacted my life the day I heard of my acceptance. Beyond the vast knowledge of horticulture skills and methods, those who work at Filoli inspire interns to ask questions, be independent but a team player, and take action that goes beyond the garden walls. They’ve inspired others to be excited for the knowledge they’ll receive and thirst for more. Not only was the horticulture knowledge shared with me, but a pure sense of camaraderie. I carry the value of holding genuine connections with people, especially in the workplace, wherever I go. I have Filoli to thank for strengthening my belief in that.