October 31st 2019
A word from our chair, Dr. George Nicholas, on why YOU should join the Archaeology Student Society (A.S.S.)
When I was eight-years old I told my parents that I was going to become an archaeologist. The summer after graduating from high school, I was accepted into a small college in New Hampshire. Before even starting courses that fall, I did my first archaeology. I became a member of the archaeology society at the college. This was an opportunity to spend time with like-minded students, participate in archaeologically-themed activities (including a visit to the Peabody Museum to meet Scotty MacNeish – the archaeologist who first discovered ancient maize), and learn more about what the profession had to offer.
Those early years were formative and helped set the foundation for the decades of research, fieldwork, and teaching that would follow (see The Debitage, 2016). Those experiences helped shape my career — from an undergraduate to now chair of one of the most respected Archaeology Departments in North America. I use this personal account to promote SFU’s Archaeological Student Society (ASS). Over the years the ASS has hosted some of the best socials on campus, held showings of archaeology-themed films (from the great to the awful), provided resources for undergraduate students, and otherwise been a significant component of the Archaeology Department. Membership offers many benefits – learning from others about their experiences in field schools both local and international; finding out what faculty members are really like (and what their weaknesses are!); participating in behind-the-scenes department activities; networking with others; contributing to The Debitage; and much more. Becoming an ASS Executive member can also provide valuable experience in organizational skills, public speaking, and leadership. Such activities are often looked positively in graduate school applications, SSHRC fellowship proposals, and job hirings. I strongly encourage you to join the ASS this coming semester, as well as to consider putting your name forward for executive positions. Later, excavators George Nicholas Professor and Chair, Department of Archaeology