Preservation Fellowship

Past Preservation Fellow Anna Neuzil.
Past Preservation Fellow Anna Neuzil.

Archaeology Southwest believes that students pursuing a doctorate in anthropology should be trained in a manner that provides them with maximum flexibility in a constantly changing job market. Our program provides fellows the opportunity and funding to complete a doctoral program of original research while expanding the range of experience generally offered by academic programs.

By functioning in full partnership with the fellow’s academic institution, providing substantial financial support, and offering an opportunity to engage in diverse administrative and research responsibilities, Archaeology Southwest seeks to enhance the fellow’s academic and practical preparation, giving them the expanded skills necessary in a highly competitive employment environment. Through this process, the fellow contributes to Archaeology Southwest’s long-term program of preservation archaeology.

What is Preservation Archaeology?

Archaeology Southwest is a nonprofit organization committed to a long-term program of Preservation Archaeology. We use the term Preservation Archaeology to explicitly acknowledge that the archaeological record is a fragile, nonrenewable resource. Research programs and methods must, therefore, balance impacts to cultural resources with long-term preservation goals. To accomplish this, we emphasize archival research, analysis of existing collections, field survey and mapping, surface collection, and limited excavation. We share our research results with local communities and the interested public, as well as the professional community, because we believe that public outreach is vital to long-term preservation of archaeological sites.

At a general level, our research encompasses the Greater Southwest. Intensive studies are centered in southern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico. Archaeology Southwest defines and regularly updates a series of priorities for its preservation archaeology program.

How does the program work?

The Preservation Fellow Program supports an advanced graduate student in archaeology for three years. At the end of this period, the fellow is expected to have completed a doctoral dissertation.

The fellow is provided a monthly stipend of $2,250 and health insurance for the duration of the fellowship. During this time span, the fellow will consider the dissertation and related research as full-time employment. Other employment must be approved by Archaeology Southwest. Office and laboratory space, computer support, and field equipment are also provided.

The fellow is expected to define a research problem that is compatible with the requirements of his or her degree-granting institution and to work within Archaeology Southwest’s preservation archaeology priorities. The fellow should consider having at least one of Archaeology Southwest’s staff Preservation Archaeologists on his or her dissertation committee. The fellow is encouraged to use volunteer labor drawn from Archaeology Southwest’s membership in the conduct of this research.

Limited funds will be available for annual research expenses, and the fellow is expected to at least match those funds through successful proposals to outside grant funding sources, particularly the National Science Foundation.

The research fellow is expected to accomplish the following tasks as part of the fellowship:

  • Devise a research plan acceptable to the fellow’s graduate committee and to Archaeology Southwest.
  • Develop a budget and time frame for this research.
  • Organize and implement a one- to two-year field program incorporating volunteers.
  • Submit a National Science Foundation dissertation improvement grant.
  • Write a descriptive technical report on the field research to meet permit obligations.
  • Prepare and defend a doctoral dissertation.
  • Periodically present research reports to academic and public audiences.
  • Periodically prepare brief public-oriented articles and blog entries on the research.

How do I apply?

We will announce our next call to applicants on our website, our Facebook page, and in academic and professional briefings.

What happens if I am selected?

After selection, an annual contract with two renewal options will be negotiated with the successful applicant. The fellow’s committee chair (or full committee) and the President and CEO of Archaeology Southwest will conduct a review of progress and performance at the end of each year. This will ensure that the selected candidate is on schedule for successful completion of the fellowship in three years. Insufficient progress may result in failure to renew the annual contract.