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Student Highlights: An Archaeological Study Abroad

This past Spring Charley Brummeler, a student of the Department of Geography and Anthropology, took the opportunity to study abroad to fulfill his internship requirement. He was a student assistant of an archaeological collaboration between KSU's Dr. Teresa Raczek, Dr. Lalit Pandey of J.R.N. Rajasthan Vidyapeeth University (Udaipur, India), and Dr. Prabodh Shirvalkar of Deccan College (Pune, India). The project, the Mewar Plain Archaeological Assessment, has been funded by National Geographic as well as CHSS, and KSU’s Division of Global Affairs.

The team traveled to Rajasthan, a state in northwestern India, where they investigated sites of the Ahar-Banas culture, a Chalcolithic culture that dates back to the 3rd millennium BCE. The project focused on excavations at an Ahar-Banas site in the village of Panchmata where the team found hundreds of artifacts from pottery sherds, to clay bull figurines, to quartz slingballs. They also found several large features, including walls, multiple chulhas (an Indian-style hearth), a midden (the archaeological term for a trash pit), and plaster-lined storage pits. Charley helped supervise a team of locals who participated in the digging and screening.

In addition to the excavations, the team performed an archaeological census of Ahar-Banas sites that are currently endangered. Charley believes that the data collected will be helpful to future archaeologists who need information about the sites.

 

 

In Your Own Words: How did KSU prepared you for this life changing experience?

“My professors and classes that I have taken at KSU really helped prepare me for this experience. Having Dr. Raczek as my undergraduate advisor, as well as taking her Archaeology of Identity class, taught me about how to approach people from various different cultures and how they view themselves, which is an important aspect when living and studying in a different culture by helping you to relate to them. I also learned actual archaeological technique from Dr. Terry Powis and participated in his field school up in Cartersville, GA.

For funding my trip abroad, I received the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, which is a competitive scholarship run by the State Department to promote study and work abroad opportunities for students. I received a lot of help in getting this not just from Dr. Raczek, but from Jan Morian, one of KSU's Study Abroad Advisors, as well as Michelle Miller, the KSU contact for the Gilman Scholarship. Without the help from all of these people, and KSU's focus on international studies in general, I would not have been able to undertake this life changing trip.”


Posted: September 18, 2015