Undergraduate Research & Scholarships

Marissa Lee SURF SMART

Collaborative Eco-Archaeology: Indigenous Natural Resource Stewardship

With extreme wildfires plaguing California, examining Indigenous interactions with the environment over the past two thousand years is crucial for current land management and preparation for the future of the landscape and its residents. This summer, I will work with my mentor, Alec Apodaca, as part of an integrative historical ecology and archaeology project along the central California coast (Laguna Creek, Hastings Natural History Reserve, and San Vicente Redwoods). Through hands-on fieldwork, I will develop my skills in landscape surveying, data collection, and laboratory analytics of organic eco-archaeological remains. I plan to also use my background in art to document our team efforts, offering this scientific multidisciplinary work a humanistic, creative lens that encourages public awareness and engagement with the current field of archaeology and supports Indigenous leadership in natural resource management today.

Message To Sponsor

Thank you so much for making the opportunity to pursue local anthropology research in my home state of California possible. With your contribution, I will be able to assist State Park and local California Tribes with excavation, state-of-the-art survey techniques, and lab analysis at important sites along the California Coast. Im incredibly excited that this SURF-SMART project will help me delve into my passions while also gaining new, hands-on fieldwork experience that will shape my future research. I would not have been able to explore without your generosity!
Profile image of Marissa Lee
Major: Anthropology and Art History
Mentor: Alec Apodaca
Sponsor: Johnson Fund
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