The Maryland Entomological Society’s 326th regular meeting will be held Friday, 15 February 2019, at 8:00 p.m., in Room 004 (one floor below the street level), Biological Sciences Building, University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC). Bring a friend and specimens, observations, and books to share. Refreshments will be provided. Presentations are scheduled to begin at 8:15 p.m.
Speaker: Patricia Nichols, Director of Education, Philadelphia Insectarium and Butterfly Pavilion
Title: Adventures of an Entomologist and a Start-Up Insectarium
Abstract. The Philadelphia Insectarium and Butterfly Pavilion (IBP) opened in February of 2016 in Northeast Philadelphia. This is an interactive science museum where visitors come in to experience arthropods and other animals from around the world. It has a 7,000 square foot butterfly pavilion where butterflies fly year around. Trisha started working there in September of 2017 as the Director of Living Exhibits and switched over to Director of Education when the opportunity arose. Her passion is in teaching about insects and helping people, young and old, get over their innate fears. In the last two years, IBP has undergone a complete remodel of their two floors and has increased its impact on Northeast Philadelphia and surrounding areas. This includes starting a bug camp and expanding afterschool programs from 1 class per week to 9 classes per week. Their growth is unparalleled in the world of insectariums and they plan to continue growing and spreading a message of love and understanding of insects.
Bio. Patricia Nichols earned her Bachelor of Science in Entomology from Michigan State University (MSU) in 2013. She worked as a full-time lab manager at MSU for three years researching classical biological control of the brown marmorated stink bug. During that time, she founded her own insect education business called, Insectopia. She traveled to schools, birthday parties, and museums to share her love of insects. She ended up leaving research to follow this passion. She now works as the Director of Education at the Philadelphia Insectarium and Butterfly Pavilion. The education department has doubled in the last year. Travel shows, after-school programs, and a brand new “Bug-U” camp are among her responsibilities. It is her goal to reach as many young minds as possible to share her love of insects and to create a healthy respect of the world around us in the minds of the next generation.