So I’m very happy to announce I’ve been picked to be a facilitator for the University of Sheffield’s “ThinkCreate” programme in 2016.

ThinkCreate aims to get first year undergraduates thinking about interdisciplinarity. As a landscape archaeologist with a foot in the military archaeology camp and an increasing interest in contemporary archaeology (and a love-hate relationship with GIS and all that that entails), I wholly support getting students to think outside of their main academic silo as early as possible. As the ThinkCreate page says: “Taking part in ThinkCreate will help you develop and demonstrate the kind of transferable skills that are highly valued by employers—teamwork, communication, motivation, organisation, research skills, self-discipline, IT skills, professionalism, and the ability to grapple with an intellectual problem in a creative, collaborative spirit.”

As part of this, I need to provide a little 150-ish word blurb about myself for the new students. This is what I came up with:

“I am a first-year PhD candidate in the Department of Archaeology. I study the contemporary military landscape archaeology of British Army training practices, with my central case study at the Otterburn Training Area in Northumberland. I completed a joint BA in Archaeology and Japanese Language and History at the Australian National University, Canberra, in 2007, including a year studying in Tsukuba, Japan. After graduating I worked as a consulting archaeologist in Sydney for two years, then came to the UK and did archaeology while backpacking and volunteering for another two years. In 2012-13 I did an MA in landscape archaeology at Sheffield, using GIS to look at the landscape history of a small community, then spent a year as Community Archaeologist in Northumberland National Park. I worked with families, school groups and adult volunteers to boost public engagement with archaeology. This introduced me to the Otterburn Training Area and gave the initial idea for my PhD. Outside of my studies I’m a lindy-hopper, maker of things, volunteer archaeology educator, and horror/SF nerd.”

It’s interesting trying to compress my work/study history and interests into a soundbyte…