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The 2024 Summer Kew Interns

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Published March 21, 2024

The 2024 Kew Interns this year are two sophomores in the Biological Sciences Department, Aislinn Lavery ’26 (right) and Adline Dely ’26 (left). The Kew Internship gives Smith students the opportunity to conduct plant research at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, England. Students intern alongside Kew scientists on projects in molecular biology, conservation genetics or bioinformatics for the course of 12 weeks. And they have the opportunity to be co-authors on scientific publications resulting from their research. 

Lavery is a biology major and a neuroscience minor, who also works in the Barresi lab with zebrafish embryos. “I applied to the Kew internship because having traveled there with family on a previous trip, I fell in love with its beauty and the amazing scientific projects in progress there. I feel so lucky to get to return and experience the botanic gardens as a researcher instead of a tourist!” shared Lavery. 

Dely, a biology major, is interested in the intersections of genetics, molecular biosciences and chemistry, with a focus on general, organic and inorganic chemistry. Dely has worked as an AEMES scholar the past two years, currently working with Interim Director John Berryhill and Manager of Education Sarah Loomis exploring how botanic gardens can conserve global botanical diversity and mitigate biodiversity loss, delving into the ecological impact of climate change on Magnolia fraseri, aligning with global conservation initiatives, and working on effective science communication to drive awareness and foster change. 

“This internship offers an opportunity to enhance my laboratory skills and explore bioinformatic analysis, which is why I applied. Immersing myself in the world's premier botanic garden will enable me to address the crisis, build valuable skills, and gain knowledge for the future. I'm grateful for this valuable learning opportunity and eager to contribute to ongoing research at Kew,” said Dely.  

Funding for the Kew internship experience comes from a generous endowment established in honor of Muriel Kohn Pokross class of 1934.