My study abroad experience was one of the most eye opening adventures of my life. Before studying abroad, I wanted to be an archaeologist but how was I to know if I actually enjoy doing it without ever working on an archaeology site before. One of my classes provided me just that opportunity. Every day, Monday through Friday, we would go to the archaeology site and learn the basic skills of excavating. Although it was a lot of work our professor was nice and he understood that we were volunteers and that we were all there to learn so he tried to incorporate fun activities into our long and exhausting days. One of these activities included going swimming in the Aegean Sea on our lunch break and at the end of the day. This experience was so great because this was the time when we interacted with the other volunteers on the site who were from Greece, Italy, Norway and other parts of America. Learning to excavate was an amazing experience. We learned everything from opening a trench to closing a trench, and from keeping a trench level to documenting the findings. These were all key things I learned in my class. This class was so eye-opening for me and it cemented my future. Archaeology major or not, volunteering on an archaeology site is an amazing experience full of new friends, new experiences, and a new home away from home.
For more information on the College Year in Athens program, visit the CGIS website.