Archaeology as a Public Good: Why Studying Archaeology Creates Good Careers and Good Citizens

Part of: Society for American Archaeology 84th Annual Meeting, Albuquerque, NM (2019)

This collection contains the abstracts of the papers presented in the session entitled "Archaeology as a Public Good: Why Studying Archaeology Creates Good Careers and Good Citizens," at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

Why should students take archaeology courses and complete academic degrees? This panel's answer is that the study of archaeology can and should prepare students at all levels for socially responsible lives and excellent career opportunities. The divide between academic and public archaeology is based on a false choice. All archaeological courses and programs (BA, MA and PhD) can connect thinking like an archaeologist with the needs and demands of society at large if they offer students the proper tool kit of methodologies and techniques. If this occurs, archaeological study opens the career door wide open for students at all levels. The public needs people who can think and practice archaeology in a wide array of areas, including: K-12 classrooms, community culture and historic centers, museums, governance, and municipal land-use and zoning offices. This panel includes archaeologists experienced in a broad swath of archaeological settings such : universities, CRM firms, heritage centers, tribal centers, museums, government agencies to discuss the cultural benefits of archaeological study and its career opportunities when it is taught with the public good in mind.