There are many ways to get hands-on experience and delve deeper into anthropology at Washington College. Take learning into your own hands with our archaeology field schools or interdisciplinary programs. Gain professional experience and skills through internships with the Past Is Present Archaeology Lab, GIS Program, Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience, or the Museum, Field, and Community Minor. Explore your interests by assisting with faculty research or joining the Anthropology Club. Plenty of opportunities await!
Opportunities for Credit
Students engage in a two-credit culminating internship where they will be placed with a local partner in informal education based on their content area of expertise, including but not limited to museums, historical societies, art spaces, environmental education centers, and Washington College Centers for Excellence.
Washington College’s bi-annual summer Field School in Archaeology give students practical experience in all phases of archaeological fieldwork, from site preparation through lab analysis. Students are rotated through various activities such as surveying methods, site reconnaissance and remote sensing technologies, excavation, recording, drawing, photography, and laboratory processing. Each of these activities are supplemented with lectures, readings, and a field manual written specifically for the Field Schools.
In addition to the practical aspects of the course, students learn a great deal about regional and local history. Students will be exposed to additional topics such as architectural analysis, Contact period relations, and effects of climate change. Two of Dr. Markin's current projects:
In an ongoing partnership with the Maryland Historical Trust, students are conducting survey and excavation at the 18th Century Barwick's Ordinary (tavern) site near Denton, MD. We will continue digging historic structures – cellars, privies, and storage pits – identified through MHT remote sensing surveys and the 2021 field school excavations.
In 2019, the field school partnered with the Lost Towns Project, Inc., to survey and excavate several sites in the Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary on the Patuxent River, documenting the effects of climate change, erosion, and human activity on 10,000 years of human occupation. Analysis of artifacts recovered from these excavations is ongoing.
As part of the Learn by Doing tradition of Washington College, The Anthropology Department has many courses designed to provide practical and unique experiential opportunities for students.
Each fall semester, Professor Steinmetz offers an Inside-Out Course in collaboration with the Baylor Women’s Correctional Institution in New Castle, DE. The international education program brings incarcerated (Inside) and college (Out) students together in a semester long academic course.
Last fall, nine students from Washington College and ten students from BWCI engaged in an on-site classroom component and off-site collaborative work that pushed them to see each other as individuals rather than statistics or stereotypes and to critically question the foundations of social inequality. The benefits of a diverse group of students contributing a myriad of perspectives to the learning process epitomizes the college’s value of moral courage and mission to develop citizen leaders.Inside-Out
Every other fall semester, Professor Markin offers a Museum Studies course in collaboration with the Digital Scholarship in Museum Partnerships (DSMP). Students utilize digital technologies to not only curate and conserve cultural materials and oral histories of a community, but to develop online virtual exhibits that bring this history to a larger, international public. Working with local community members to determine what elements are crucial to the narrative, students see the real-world impact of their academic study.
In fall 2018, students in the Museum Studies course collaborated with the Betterton Heritage Museum. Fall 2020 will involve students in collaboration with the African American Schoolhouse Museum in Worton, MD. This work will be part of a larger a Chesapeake Heartland Project grant received by Professor Markin, Professor Sara Clark-Vivier (Assistant Prof., Education), and Raven Bishop (WC Instructional Technologist and founder of DSMP). The Chesapeake Heartland Project is an innovative public history project led by the Starr Center in collaboration with the local community and the National Museum of African-American History and Culture. Students will again archive and digitize cultural materials and oral histories to both preserve this history for future generations and to make the history of this community known to audiences outside of Worton through an online virtual reality exhibit.
Pursue what interests you by conducting independent research projects or contributing to faculty research. Anthropology faculty are conducting applied anthropology research connected to criminology, climate change, and preserving prehistoric and historical archaeological sites.
The anthropology department also offers the Compleat Angler Fellowship Program for Ethnographic and Archaeological Research on the Chesapeake Bay. Fellows can receive grants up to $1,000 to work with an anthropology faculty member to research past and present cultures of the Chesapeake Bay.View Research Funds
Students who excel in anthropology are invited to join Lambda Alpha, the National Anthropology Honor Society. There are additional leadership opportunities for those students who wish to serve as officers.
Lambda Alpha is the national collegiate honor society for anthropology. It was founded for the purpose of encouraging and stimulating scholarship and research in anthropology by recognizing and honoring superior achievement in the discipline among students, faculty and other persons engaged in the study of anthropology.
The Lambda Alpha Gamma of Maryland Chapter Senior Award is presented to the graduating senior in anthropology who, as a member of Lambda Alpha, demonstrates exceptional promise as a research scientist in anthropology.
Members of Lambda Alpha may be elected as student officers in the roles of President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Ritual Protector. Officer duties are outlined in the Chapter Bylaws.
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Julie Markin
We welcome students of all majors to join anthropology club! Club members plan events, trips, and volunteer activities related to culture and archaeology. Each year, we participate in National Anthropology Day and take field trips to important cultural events and museums.
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Emily Steinmetz
Internships & Work Experience
Gain real world experience and apply what you have learned in your classes through an internship focused on anthropology or archaeology. Faculty networks open doors to external internship opportunities at a wide range of museums, universities, governmental agencies, not-for-profits, and volunteer organizations across the country. Internships are also available through several Washington College programs, and often carry a stipend so you can earn while you learn.
The GIS lab provides students with experiential learning opportunities and a professional working experience. The work their interns do expands their critical thinking and analytic skills by pushing them to network and respond to the demands of paying clients and partners.
The Starr Center explores oral and written histories, provides educational programs, and engages in public outreach. The Starr Center funds a number of paid student internships and positions each year to provide students with experiential and integrated learning opportunities.
Center for Environment and Society
Past Is Present supports students, staff, faculty, and members of the public who want to learn more about our past. PIP offers paid internships that allow students to gain hands-on experience while building a resume that sets them apart from their peers.
Scholarships and Awards