PSB 65 (3) 2019

Page 37

STUDENT SECTION The Botanical Society of America has been a society for botanical research and education for 126 years, and the student portion of its membership is growing stronger over the years. For our Botany 2019 meeting in Tucson, Arizona, we had 497 students (40.7% of the total!) registered at the conference. BSA is committed to supporting its student members in every feasible way. Starting this year, BSA increased the amount awarded to support graduate student research from $500 to $1500 per person without decreasing the number of award recipients. In addition, to keep the cost of student memberships affordable, BSA urges professional members of the society to provide gift memberships to their students. This year we started to offer 3-year student memberships for only $50, which stays effective even if one were no longer a student during those three years. This year, BSA also initiated a brand-new paid position for students to be BSA social media liaisons. BSA is incorporating students’ perspectives to stay connected and is trying to shape botany’s future with its student members! Students of all levels are also encouraged to get engaged in the Society, and students’ voices are welcomed in every BSA committee.

By Min Ya and Shelly Gaynor BSA Student Representatives

Serving as a student representative or on a BSA committee is an invaluable experience, and it is a great way to know how professional societies work and how to organize conference events. If you are interested in becoming the next student representative, serving on a committee (a list of committees can be found at home/governance/committees-committeeofficers.html), or nominating someone for any of the positions—or even if you have any questions regarding the positions or BSA in general—feel free to contact your current student representatives: Minya (yamin@g., @0_minyaaa) and Shelly (, @ShellyGaynor). Of course, make sure to follow and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter (@Botanical_), and Instagram (botanicalsocietyofamerica)!

GETTING TO KNOW YOUR NEW STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE: SHELLY GAYNOR When did you join BSA and what motivated you to do so? I stumbled upon during my sophomore year of undergraduate at the University of Central Florida (UCF). I was tasked with looking for funding sources for my research project and found the undergraduate research grant. I started to explore the BSA website, but I didn’t join BSA until my awesome summer NSF REU (Research Experience for