Ambergris Caye Archaeological Project II

COVID-19 NOTICE: Please be sure to reach out to the project contact to find out the status of their upcoming season. Many projects have cancelled fieldwork for 2020 and the information below may not reflect that.

This listing expired on April 2, 2020. Please contact for any updated information.

Location: San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, Belize, Central America

Season: May 25, 2020 to June 23, 2020

Session Dates: May 25-June 23, 2020

Application Deadline: April 1, 2020

Deadline Type: Exact Date


Program Type:
Field School

RPA Certified:

University of North Carolina Wilmington

Project Director:
Dr. Scott E. Simmons

Project Description:

Ambergris Caye, a Caribbean island off the north coast of Belize, provides the setting for the summer 2020 summer field school in Maya archaeology sponsored by the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Students will earn 6 academic credits over the course of this four-week program, which runs from May 25 to June 23, 2020, with a four-day break scheduled at about the mid-point of the field school. Students will be trained in all aspects of archaeological field methods, including surveying, excavation, recording, and preliminary laboratory work of processing and analysis of archaeological materials. Dr. Scott Simmons, a professor in the Department of Anthropology at UNCW, has directed eight separate archaeology field schools in Belize since 2001, the last three of which took place on Ambergris Caye (in 2010, 2012, and 2017). The research focus of the field school is the San Pedro site (ca AD 1400-1600+), located in one of the few areas of San Pedro Town that have not been seriously impacted by historic and modern construction activities. This particular program builds on the successes of the 2017 archaeology field school program at the site, where numerous Maya domestic features, human remains, and a wide range of Late Postclassic, Spanish Colonial, and British era artifacts were recovered. Students have the opportunity to actively engage in and make contributions to archaeological research that focuses on a period of Maya prehistory researchers are still striving to better understand. They will work directly with other professional archaeologists specializing in lithic, ceramic, and faunal analysis as well as the analysis and interpretation of Spanish and British colonial materials. Academic credits will be earned through completion of the Archaeological Field Methods (ANT 311) course offered by the University of North Carolina Wilmington. These credits are transferrable to other colleges and universities in the US, Canada, and beyond.

Period(s) of Occupation: Maya Late Postclassic Period, ca AD 1300-1500

Maximum enrollment for the course (ANT 311) is 20 students. Enrollment deadline is April 1, 2020.

Project Size: 1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 30 days (maximum)

Minimum Age: 18

Experience Required: none

Room and Board Arrangements:
Program cost is approximately $4000 US, and includes in-state (North Carolina) tuition, lodging, meals (estimated), airfare (estimated), in-country transportation, equipment, supplies, and other expenses. Tuition is higher for out of state residents.

Academic Credit:
6 (six) academic credits through the University of North Carolina Wilmington

Contact Information:

Scott E. Simmons, Ph.D.

Department of Anthropology 601 S. College Road


North Carolina



Phone: (910) 962-3429

Fax: (910) 962-3543

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