Interested in getting involved with the MSU Herbarium?
The MSU Herbarium depends on our fantastic volunteers for many critical aspects of our operation. Volunteer opportunities include mounting and finishing specimens, databasing our collections, transcribing label data from specimen images (can be done from the comfort of your couch!), assisting with our public outreach, and much, much more. We welcome volunteers of all ages, skills, abilities, and interests! Contact us to find out how you can help support and promote biodiversity science.
The MSU Herbarium's collections are imaged and placed in our online databases. Once online, the label of each specimen needs to be transcribed. Transcription makes it possible for botanists to download large sets of data that can be used to answer important questions about plants. Our goal is to eventually provide all our collections online and accessible to botanists all over the world. You can help with this large, and important, job!
Click here to access instructions on how you can help with this project!
Click here to view our training module that will make you an expert at transcription!
Please contact us if you have any questions regarding transcription. We are always here to help!
We accept ethically and legally collected specimens that document research plants or occurrences of plants, lichens, and fungi that have scientific value. Anyone can collect specimens for donation to herbaria that help to record botanical biodiversity and will be kept in our collections. If you have research plants that you would like to have preserved in our herbarium, or if you would like to document plants from your favorite habitat, please contact us about donating your specimens to the MSU Herbarium.
Make sure to collect ethically! Do not collect rare or endangered plants, and do not collect plants from very small populations. Collect legally! Never collect from private property unless you have permission from the owner. If you want to collect on public land, find out which permits you need first and get permission.
Visit our YouTube channel for videos on how to collect plants.
Another way you can get involved and support the MSU Herbarium is through our donations site! To donate, click on this link (or enter https://givingto.msu.edu/gift/ into your browser) and search "John H. Beaman Memorial Herbarium Fund" in the Areas to Support search bar.