March 12, 2014
Margaret Sneeringer, Graduate Student Liaison to the Cincinnati Society, has been passionate about archaeology since elementary school. Ever encouraging, her parents subscribed her to Dig and Archaeology magazines. Margaret’s interest in archaeology has continued all through her undergraduate education at Boston University to today. As a Ph.D. candidate at the Classics Department at the University of Cincinnati, she is writing her dissertation on “diachronic patterns of pottery consumption in the Nemea Valley.” Throughout her studies, Margaret has been an active member of the Archaeology Institute of America, joining in 2007.
As a student at BU, Margaret had many friends working in the AIA office, so she was always up to date on volunteer opportunities. She volunteered at archaeology fairs in Boston and has attended the AIA’s Annual Meeting since 2009. That first Annual Meeting almost immediately expanded Margaret’s network of professional contacts, as she says, “I realized that the people sitting next to me in sessions were names I recognized from my reading and research.” The grants the AIA provides for student travel to the Annual Meeting directly encourage this unmatched access to established scholars and researchers.
Margaret has participated in several different field projects in Ireland, Turkey, Cyprus and at several sites in Greece. For the University of Cincinnati Classics Outreach Program, partially sponsored by the AIA, Margaret gave a presentation about the Grand Tour and the rise of modern archaeological tourism. Cincinnati has a very active Local AIA Society and Margaret an important part of their work: “I’ve been the Graduate Student Liaison to the Cincinnati Society of the AIA since 2010, and I’ve served as a council representative for the Cincinnati Society since 2011.” Using her experiences at AIA fairs and her many friends in the UC Classics Department, Margaret is hoping to help organize an event in Cincinnati for International Archaeology Day, October 18, 2014. Margaret sees a need for organizations like the AIA to support “the academic research that provides the new knowledge, and…projects designed to disseminate that information to general audiences.” For young archaeologists like Margaret, the future of archaeology lies in public education, along with sustainability, site preservation and the financial resources to support these goals.
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