The SAA Archaeological Record The SAA Archaeological Record • March 2011 • Volume 11 • Number 2 : Page 6

CAREERS IN ARCHAEOLOGY To assist in making our final selections, we “dug-up” as much information as we could on our nominees through Google. We asked Task Group members to make a case for a nominee by preparing a brief written statement. Then we held a very long conference call and made our selections. Early in the process, Jane Baxter offered a way to attend to the inevitable oversights that arose, for these 12 essays rep-resent only 0.2 percent of the 7,000+ SAA membership. During her tenure, subsequent issues of The SAA Archaeo--logical Record will feature an occasional “Careers in Archae-ology” column. The same questions posed to these 12 archaeologists will guide our subsequent authors. About Your Current Job A 6. How did you arrive at your current position? 7. What is your typical day like? 8. What is the most rewarding or memorable experience you’ve had in your current position? 9. What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced in your current position? Advice You’d Give A 10. What advice would you offer to someone thinking of pur-suing a similar career in archaeology? The Asking Like the author-selection process, the set of questions also went through a process of “list and weed.” Task Group mem-bers offered suggestions and, through discussion, we gener-ated others. We also consulted two outside sources: “Inter-views with Archaeologists” on the Society for California Archaeology’s (2010) website and “Profile of an Archaeolo-gist” in Intrigue of the Past (Smith et al. 1996). We wanted the questions to open a window into the authors’ day-to-day activities but, at the same time, challenge them to reflect on the arc of their careers and the path(s) that took them to the place they are now. We hoped the questions would encourage the authors to provide insights to those just starting out, guidance to those who advise, and with luck, perhaps inspiration to those whose careers might need reenergizing. By rejecting, collapsing, and essentializing, we whittled down our initial list of 21 questions (!) to the following ten: And Now...To The Essays The authors provided us exactly what we were looking for— personal stories of careers in archaeology— and more than fulfilled our hopes. These essays reflect the authors’ enthusi-asm for what they do, and speak with candor of responsibil-ities and dreams, of service and life-long learning. Tidbits of f wisdom and inspiration are on every page. So, enjoy! Then, since archaeology is all about patterns, in our Afterword, we consider some of the patterns and themes we recognized in this group of essays. References Cited Smith, Shelley J., Jeanne M. Moe, Kelly A. Letts, and Danielle M. Paterson 1996 Lesson 17: Archaeology As A Career. In Intrigue of the Past: A Teacher’s Activity Guide for Fourth Through Seventh Grades , by Shelley J. Smith, Jeanne M. Moe, Kelly A. Letts, and Danielle M. Paterson, pp. 89–94. U.S. Dept. of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, Washington, D.C. Society for California Archaeology 2010 Interviews with Archaeologists. Electronic document, http://www.scahome.org/about_ca_archaeology/index.htm l#interviews. Accessed November 14, 2010. A bout You 1. When and why did you decide to become an archaeologist? 2. Did a mentor dramatically influence your career? How so? A bout Your Schooling/Training 3. To what extent did your academic training prepare you for your current position? 4. To what extent did your previous job experiences prepare you for your current position? 5. Since you began your current job, have you pursued addi-tional studies or training within or outside of archaeology? What did you do and why? 6 The SAA Archaeological Record • March 2011

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