2016 PA Botany Symposium

Pennsylvania Botany SymposiumNovember 18–19, 2016
The Penn Stater Hotel Conference Center • State College, Pennsylvania

Enjoy the winning entries in the 2016 Symposium COOL PLANT FINDS slide show. View them here!


We congratulate these winners in the first-ever Pennsylvania Botany Symposium  STUDENT POSTER SESSION! Read all 27 student poster abstract submissions here.

BEST GRADUATE STUDENT Research Poster Grady Zuiderveen, Pennsylvania State University.
Stocking the hunting ground: Insights into the supply of “wild” ginseng (Panax quinquefolius L.) from Pennsylvania

Graduate Student Runner-up Marion Holmes, Ohio University. Composition of forest herb communities differs with agricultural land-use history

BEST UNDERGRADUATE Research Poster Emma Frawley, Bucknell University
A Nuclear and Chloroplast Phylogeny of Maple Trees (Acer L.) and Their Close Relatives (Hippocastanoideae, Sapindaceae)

Undergraduate Student Runners-Up

Anna Baremore, Kendra Bierman, and Max Ferlauto, Juniata College.
Variation in Arthropod Communities Associated with Native and Nonnative Vegetation at the Baker-Henry Peace Chapel and Nature Preserve (Huntingdon, PA)

Steven Munden, Washington & Jefferson University.
Identification of old-growth forests in mesophytic forests

The poster session took place Friday evening,  along with the Cool Plant Finds slide show, and Chris Martine’s presentation.

A committee of botanists from across the state worked hard to organize our 3rd biennial symposium, rich with hands-on workshop opportunities, presenters who are leaders in the field, opportunities for students to engage with professionals, and time to come together to share our work and celebrate our botanical heritage.

The focus of the Pennsylvania Botany Symposium has always been to bring together a diverse audience from amateur to academic botanists, and those interested in the natural world in general. Our invited speakers have been carefully selected to share their expertise on a variety of botanical topics including taxonomy, conservation, ecology, biology, history and floristics. Research results will be presented, but at a level appropriate for an audience of diverse backgrounds. All of our invited speakers are experts with reputations for being engaging and entertaining.

Our keynote speaker was Peggy Olwell, Plant Conservation Program Lead for the Bureau of Land Management, presenting Botany and Botanists: More Relevant Than Ever! Other speakers included:

  • James Bissell, Curator of Botany and Director of Natural Areas, Cleveland Museum of Natural History
  • Jason Cantley, Burpee Postdoctoral Fellow of Plant Genetics, Bucknell University
  • Dwayne Estes, Associate Professor of Biology at Austin Peay State University
  • Barre Hellquist, Professor of Biology Emeritus, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
  • Wes Knapp, Mountain Biologist, North Carolina Natural Heritage Program
  • Chris Martine, Burpee Professor of Biology, Bucknell University
  • Richard McCourt, Curator and Professor, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University
  • Kelly Sitch, Forest Ecologist, PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Forestry

Three full-day and three half-day botany workshops were offered this year on Friday. This year we added an exciting new element to the Pennsylvania Botany Symposium — a student poster session! This took place during our Friday evening social event. This session was intended to provide our ‘next generation of botanists’ an opportunity to present their research and engage with professional botanists and botanical enthusiasts from around the region. The Friday evening event also provided attendees from all walks of life  opportunities to interact, network and learn about new technologies, opportunities and services from our exhibitors.

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