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Women in Leadership Series

In a series of Q&A profiles, Carthage is highlighting women with leadership roles in student organizations. The women in this series have started their own campus organizations that have brought students together who share the same passions and goals for their future. These women are an inspiration to the Carthage community, and their leadership and drive is deserving of recognition.

MaryHelen Prince ’24, Horticulture Club

MaryHelen Prince ?24 MaryHelen Prince ’24 At Carthage, students are encouraged to find a place or community on campus by joining different student-led organizations. For some students, like environmental science major MaryHelen Prince ’24, the right community needed to be cultivated. The pandemic made it difficult for the Horticulture Club to maintain its presence on campus. In fall 2021, MaryHelen organized a comeback for the club, and its membership quickly grew to over 200.

Students in the org pot their own plants, learn tips and tricks for growing, collect and trade plants, have campus-wide sales, and form a community with other plant lovers. The club has also taken a trip to the Mitchell Park Domes in Milwaukee to experience and learn about their unique plants. Students even have access to the greenhouse in Carthage’s Science Center, where a variety of plants are grown and stored.

What inspired you to create your own club?

MaryHelen: “I was inspired to restart the Horticulture Club because plants are really cool and popular, and I wanted students to have an outlet and be able to find community from this common interest. Grace Condit ’24, the vice president, and I spent lots of time and energy getting this club off the ground, and now it is flourishing.”

Have you always seen yourself as a leader?

MaryHelen: “I think that I’ve had leadership tendencies and have always felt that I can get things done. I started to step into a leadership role more in college, and with the growth (no pun intended) of this club, I’ve had so many opportunities to grow my leadership capabilities.”

What has been the most exciting part about running your club?

MaryHelen: “The most exciting part is picking meeting ideas and themes and having fun executing them. My favorite one we’ve had was a plant cake walk, and we got to give our members baby plants that they got to take home with them and learn how to take care of them.”

What has been the most rewarding part of running your club?

MaryHelen: “The most rewarding part is working in the greenhouse. I love to go up there and water plants and decide what to grow and how to grow it. There is so much satisfaction about growing something from a seed and seeing it flourish and thrive.”

How do you balance school, student job, social life, other activities, and leadership?

MaryHelen: “I have my priority list; I have itemized what is most important to me and make decisions on what is the best use of my time. I know that where I direct energy is where I will have the most growth, so I make sure that what is most important is getting the most energy and what is unimportant gets the least amount.”

What advice would you give to anyone looking to start their own club?

MaryHelen: “Get a strong vice president like I have.”