Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Career Cruising with Fort St. Joseph

Hello all, Genevieve here again.

Genna working with an interested student
            I am also among some of the students from the 2015 FSJ field school that have decided to work with Dr. Nassaney in the Independent Study course this semester. One of the most rewarding things about participating in this course is that we have the privilege to attend many important activities on campus and around Kalamazoo, if not around the country. Recently, some of the students in this course, including myself, were able to participate in WMU’s Career Cruising event for middle school students in the area. This WMU event allows students to broaden their career options by exposing them to different fields. There were several stations set up presenting different departments at Western. We represented the Anthropology department along with a biological anthropology professor and graduate student. Middle school students came in small groups, to which we presented a short activity teaching them how we use the material objects that previous humans have left behind in order to determine what these peoples’ lives were like or what activities they participated in.

A biological anthropologist showing different kinds of bones
            When asked the question “what is an archaeologist?” we are used to the occasional response of “oh, well you find dinosaur bones”. Many archaeologists may chuckle or grimace at this response, but we, as students ourselves, take this as an enormous teaching opportunity. Teaching children about the function of archaeology in everyday life and expanding their views of archaeology as a future career is a key component of getting support in this amazing field. We planted a seed in hundreds of middle school minds to get them thinking about themselves as future archaeologists. Getting the youth excited about archaeology is so rewarding. Many had no idea that archaeology happened around the United States let alone right around their community with the FSJ project. These events are a huge focus of ours when it comes to creating support for the project and for the Anthropology department at Western. Make sure to tell the middle school students in your life about the amazing opportunities that the FSJAP offers with our Summer Camps. For more information on the summer camps be sure to check out our flyer at:
           - Genna

No comments: