Students participate in archeological dig
A typical college class usually entails lectures, note-taking and exams. However, students enrolled in Archeological Field Methods spent their weekdays digging deep for answers in a whole other way.
Fourteen students spent Summer A on a sugar cane farm near Belle Glade in Palm Beach County digging for archeological remains.
“It was incredible,” said Victoria Lincoln, a senior anthropology major. “It really just opened my mind up to what I’m getting myself into.”
The students stayed in trailers in the nearby town of Clewiston, leaving for the site at around 7:10 a.m. every Monday through Friday. They arrived at around 8 a.m. every morning and began digging units one meter by one meter in size. The students found animal bones, ceramics and even a piece of human remains. After digging and finding artifacts, they would spend time in a lab analyzing their findings, determining what exactly it was that they dug up.
“We alternated between being in the lab and screening through the material,” Lincoln said.
The students typically got out at around 3 p.m. every day. After every dig on Wednesday, the students would gather for an informal lecture from their professors.
Summer rain prevented the students from working in the field for a whole week, but according to professors who were present at the dig, the site was the most difficult one they had seen.
“They said that if we can do this, we can do anything,” Lincoln said.
Lincoln said that she not only learned a lot during the class but also became closer to the other students in her field. She said the best part of the class was being in the field and getting her hands dirty.
“Actually digging in my unit and getting the experience of digging through different soil textures (was my favorite part),” Lincoln said.
The most important thing she learned was the techniques the team used to dig up the artifacts.
“The whole experience — to learn how to work with my unit — was a major thing that I learned,” Lincoln said. “Being on this excavation really opened my eyes.”