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Meet Our 2009 Natural & Physical Sciences Interns & Volunteers

We in the Natural and Physical Sciences Department at the Libraries would like to introduce you to our interns and volunteers.

Margaret (Maggie) Ansell is our enthusiastic intern who hails from West Palm Beach, FL. She is currently a junior at St. John's College in Annapolis where she has worked as a lab assistant for the last two years. Maggie's mother is a librarian and with that important influence, Maggie developed an interest in all learning. In her own words "I've always enjoyed learning everything I can about everything."  Maggie's major project at the Natural History Library is pulling together the many writings of Dr. David Challinor, naturalist and biologist who served as Smithsonian Assistant Secretary for Science and Research. Time permitting, she will continue a project begun by another intern which includes acquiring Smithsonian curators' signatures on their publications in our collections. Maggie's outside interests include rowing in a single sculling shell, singing in choirs, and of course reading.

Two interns are working with Librarian Courtney Shaw this summer: Taila McKenzie is a sophomore majoring in Anthropology and German at Virginia Commonwealth University. Taila's project at the Libraries concentrates on Index Animalium which she finds interesting,educational and challenging. In her off-hours, Taila spends time with cheering, gymnastics, singing, hairdressing, dancing, and shopping.

Sarah Lehmberg, from Houston, TX, now attending Goucher College and majoring in Communications, is busy writing annotated bibliographies for possible resources on African American scientists for the new African American History and Culture Museum. Her non-work pleasures include traveling, playing guitar, enjoying nature, and spending time with good friends.

Linda Soto a volunteer in the Natural History Library worked as a librarian for a navy contractor for twenty-three years. Linda will be working with our staff in the Anthropology Library as well. A very busy lady, Linda has taken several Smithsonian-sponsored trips around the world and has enjoyed and learned from them all. Currently she is taking art classes, primarily in oil painting and colored pencil drawing classes from the Art League School at the Torpedo Factory in Old Town, Alexandria. 

The volunteer who has been with us since 1995 is Joan Horn. She worked with the Smithsonian Institution  Press from 1964-1990. After retirement, she too traveled across the United States and around the world. During that time she accomplished one of her life goals—walking on the Great Wall of China. She has even volunteered at the Naturalist Center. In her free time, she enjoys reading, gardening, acting an a senior group at the Round House Theater in Silver Spring, Md, and participates in other group activities such as book clubs, the League of Women Voters, and Jefferson Cafe.

Another volunteer in our department is Lesley Parilla who graduated last summer with a MLS from the University of Hawaii, Manoa. Lesley came to the Libraries through the Entomology Department. Her background has included work in the fine arts and humanities and she wants to expand her expertise by working in the sciences. Several of her varied interests include playing the Irish harp, taking part in community theater,and singing. Lesley says the change of pace has been fun and she appreciates associating with the staff and other volunteers.

James (Jim) Smith is our sole male volunteer. He graduated from Harvard University with a MBA. His expertise is as a project manager and systems engineer. The invaluable work he is engaged in is coming up with suggestions for our "Collaborating Across Boundaries" in the Libraries' Strategic Plan, creating both physical and virtual collaborative space for future projects.—Angela Haggins

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