Majors: Anthropology with a focus in forensics
Minors: Archaeology and Criminology/Criminal Justice
Hometown: Omaha, NE
Year: 4th year graduating Dec 23'
I have always loved "The Illustrated Man" by Ray Bradbury. I am a sucker for a good sci-fi novel, and I really enjoy all the interesting themes in the short stories. In addition, I just finished the "A Court of Thorns and Roses" series by Sarah J. Maas, and I am obsessed. I loved the world Sarah created and the character development throughout the entire series!
"Signs" directed by M. Night Shyamalan has always been at the top of my list. I love about a million other movies, but for some reason "Signs" has always stuck out. Of course, I am into the alien/sci-fi shtick, but what really gets me is the overall character development and all the little connections that are made for the viewer as you watch the film.
I am studying my chosen majors/minors because I had always been drawn to the social sciences while growing up. When I first came to UNL I selected the standard anthropology major because I thought that it was broad enough to encompass all my interests. Once I took the Intro. to Biological Anthropology course, I realized I wanted to pursue the forensics side of anthropology. I paired my major with an archaeology minor because it sounded fun and to also gain a more encompassing perspective of anthropology as an entire discipline. I added a criminology minor once I began specializing in forensic anthropology to be more knowledgeable on the legal side of things. Currently, I would be happy to work in any kind of related job to get as much experience as possible, but long term I could really see myself working in academia at a University!
Choosing to major in anthropology or forensic anthropology can be a very rewarding decision! Both studies are ideal for those who are curious about humanity, passionate about science, and interested in contributing to society - be it through cultural understanding or solving real-world mysteries.
One of my favorite classes I have taken was ANTH488: Contemporary Issues in Anthropology. Dr. Richards-Rissetto did a fantastic job detailing the many, many issues or debates there are to talk about relating to the field of anthropology. It was an interesting and engaging class that I would recommend to anyone! In addition, I would recommend any course taught by Dr. Belcher. Of course, he is a great professor and I love the courses he teaches, but I love how he integrates his extensive list of real-life experiences into his coursework. Other fun courses I have taken include Underwater Forensic Investigation (ANTH497), Advanced Fieldwork in Forensic Archaeology (ANTH497), and Stitching Culture: US-Japan Quilt Exhibit Collaborative (ANTH292)!
I have yet to participate in a study abroad experience, but I am hoping to participate in some fieldwork abroad this coming summer or at some point during graduate school these next couple of years. Otherwise, as I previously mentioned, I took part in Underwater Forensic Investigation, Advanced Fieldwork in Forensic Archaeology, and Stitching Culture: US-Japan Quilt Collaborative. Each of these courses provided a new, engaging experience for me! Underwater Forensic Investigation took place at the Cedar Point Biological Research Station, and it involved getting scuba diving certified as well as learning the underwater archaeological processes as they relate to forensic recovery. We finished off the two-week course by completing a "body" recovery and a "gun" recovery while following the proper methods of underwater forensic archaeology. The Advanced Fieldwork in Forensic Archaeology course took place at the Reller Prairie Field Station, and it was a three-week course that involved learning the basic field techniques in archaeology and forensic archaeology. At the end of the course, I was able to create a final portfolio and DPAA-style report detailing the activities and findings during the excavation of a burial of faux skeletal remains. And as for Stitching Culture: US-Japan Quilt Collaborative, it was a brand-new experience for me. As a forensic anthropology major, I hadn’t really delved into the museum studies side of anthropology prior to taking this course. It turned out to be super fun! It was a four-week-long course all about creating an exhibit at the International Quilt Museum. I was able to see all the behind-the-scenes preservation/curatorial work and even got to work with students from Japan, thus giving me a broader cultural understanding! I thought the exhibit we created turned out great and I am proud to say that I helped with the process. The exhibit, "Stitching and Sharing Culture: Molas from Panama's Guna People," is on display now at the International Quilt Museum, so go check it out!
As of now, my post-graduation plans are to go to graduate school to pursue an MA in anthropology and a forensic anthropology certificate. I am hoping to come back to UNL for my graduate studies! I hope to gain a lot more experience in the coming years. And overall, I am super excited for what's to come!