Hands-On Experience is emphasized in our program, and we are one of the few undergraduate programs in the country that require majors to design and carry out an original research project, write a senior thesis, and present it before the department. This is excellent preparation for graduate school and the working world. Senior theses are on file in the department. Papers written by students from these studies have been presented at professional meetings, published in national and local journals, and presented to government agencies for use in development and planning.
Hands-on experience in cultural anthropology has included Senior Seminar projects on:
- Debates about renovating Soulard Farmers Market
- Conflicts between St. Charles Historic District and the Casino
- Gender stereotyping in birthday parties at Chuck E. Cheese restaurant
- The adjustment of Japanese exchange students to UMSL
- Local Native Americans working to achieve federal recognition as a tribe
- The religious life of nuns in a Benedictine monastery
- St. Louis tattoo parlors
Hands-on experience in archaeology has included Senior Seminar projects on:
- The department field school at the Cahokia Mounds State Historic Park, IL, exploring portions of a prehistoric earthen mound and/or palisade wall associated with the Mississippian culture (AD 1000 - 1400).
- The department field school in Arrow Rock, MO. Excavations in Arrow Rock will concentrate on a stoneware pottery factory (1854 - 1870).
- Internships and volunteer work in the UMSL archaeological collection, which houses one of the most comprehensive and diverse collections of artifacts from the Eastern Missouri/St. Louis area, from Paleoindian to the 20th Century.
- Field schools and study abroad programs resulting in Senior Theses on experiments with mummification (Egypt) and Byzantine burial practices (Jordan).
Hands-on experience in biological anthropology has included:
A Senior Seminar project on the effect of sloth behavior on tamarins at the St. Louis Zoo.
Alumni Careers have included law, special education, zookeeper, writer, contract archaeologist, radiology, insurance, and many other productive careers in individual and corporate business, education, public service, government, health care, and other spheres. Our majors have also been accepted into Graduate School at UM-St. Louis, Washington University, University of Missouri-Columbia, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, Texas A&M, Ohio State, The New School for Social Research, Indiana, Michigan, Chicago, UCLA, Tulane, Duke, and others.