Tel Akko, Israel: Excavation, Survey, GIS, Conservation, Public/Community Outreach and Archaeological Sciences (Summer)
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Casey Sennett

Liberal Arts Major(s): Anthropology, Jewish Studies
Hometown: Philipsburg, Pennsylvania

What was the best part of your experience?

The best part of my experience was having the opportunity to excavate at an Archaeological site. It has always been a dream of mine to participate in an Archaeological dig, and this experience allowed me to see if Archaeology is a possible career path for me. While the days were long and tiring, I was excited to wake up and work in my square every day. I never knew what I would find while digging each day, and it was amazing to uncover the remnants of past peoples and civilizations. It was fascinating to see the traces of peoples that have lived thousands of years before us. It made me wonder what we will leave behind when we are gone and how those remains might be interpreted.

"It was fascinating to see the traces of peoples that have lived thousands of years before us."

How did this experience impact you academically?

As an Anthropology major, I have heard about my professors’ experiences at Archaeological sites, and I have previously learned about the practices and methods that occur onsite. Being on an Archaeological site, however, is totally different. While we are doing much of what we learn about in class, being able to learn about Archaeology in the field is incomparable to learning about Archaeology in a textbook or in class. Being a part of a dig allowed me to fully grasp concepts and methods through hands-on experience and trial and error. It allowed me to better understand the field of Archaeology and Archaeological practices that I have and will continue to learn about in class.

How will this experience impact your career goals?

While I truly loved my experience at the dig, it made me realize that Archaeology may no longer be my desired career path. Working in the square was an amazing experience, but I realized during our Open House with community members that I would have preferred to be interacting with members of the community and educating them on our findings. Through my time at the dig and other work I did in Community Archaeology and Conservation in Israel, I realized that I have a passion for education and disseminating historical information to the public. My experiences onsite made me realize that I might want to pursue a career in museum studies or a career that would allow me to work more closely with the public.

How has the Paterno Fellows Program had an impact on this experience?

The Paterno Fellows Program allowed me to pursue such an amazing study abroad experience. Through the generous donations from the Paterno Fellows Program and the College of the Liberal Arts, I was able to obtain field experience and learn more about my desired career goals and aspirations. I am so grateful for the academic and financial support that the Paterno Fellows Program gave me. I am so fortunate to be in a program that helps students reach their goals and ultimately creates more well-rounded students and global citizens.

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