Departmental News

News Archive

Keep up-to-date on all the latest Anthropology Department News below, or view our news archive to check out our past news and events.

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  • Spring/Summer 2022

    • Dr. Carolyn Boyd's recent identification of speech and breath in the rock art of the Lower Pecos is featured in the Digs & Discoveries section of Archaeology Magazine (July/August).

    • Congratulations to Dr. Emily Brunson who be promoted to Full Professor September 1, 2022. 

    • Congratulations to the the winners of our Research Conference! 

      First place | Amy Reid
      Second place | Eric Gauldin
      Third Place | Rex Long

      First Place | Tierney Proffit
      Second Place | Druonna Collier
      Third Place | Kayli Lord

      First Place | Amanda Rodriguez
      Second Place | Isabel Algoe
      Third Place | Aubrey Jacques

      Olivia Green was also awarded a $25 prize.

    • This 10-minute news story discusses the recovery of deceased migrants and the families who search for them. FACTS faculty, Drs. Spradley and Hamilton are featured with Applied Anthropology PhD students.

    • Congratulations to Dr. Frank Reilly, whose recent Spiro Exhibit and publication, in collaboration with Dr. Eric Singleton of the National Cowboy Museum, won three combined awards. 

      The Spiro Publication won:

      • The Oklahoma Book of the Year Award for Design/Illustration/Photography. This is presented by the Oklahoma Center for the Book, which is sponsored by the library of Congress.
      • Mountain Plains Museum Association Book of the Year Award for Publication Design

       The Spiro exhibition won:

      • The Oklahoma Museum Association Outstanding Special Project Award.


    • Dr. Nicole Taylor's research on body image and social media is featured in a recent Discovery Magazine article, "How is Social Media Morphing our Self-Image?"

    • Congratulations to doctoral student Mariah Moe, co-advisors Drs. Tim Gocha and Kate Spradley, who has been awarded a P.E.O. Scholar Award. This $20,000 award recognizes and encourages scholarly excellence by women in doctoral programs. Mariah is one of 100 students selected from 775 applicants.

    • Dr. Jill Pruetz recently spoke on her research, entitled 'Studying Chimps at the Edge: Behavioral Ecology of our Closest Living Relatives at the Limits of their Range' at the 5th Annual Women in Science Conference at Northeastern Illinois University and sponsored in part by the Chicago Cancer Health Equity Collaborative. Dr. Pruetz was one of three biological anthropologists featured in the conference. A recording of her lecture can be found on YouTube.

    • Drs. Kate Spradley and Nicholas Herrmann along with PhD, MA, and undergraduate students conducted a geophysical survey of unmarked graves at Guillen Cemetery in Brownsville in preparation for exhumations next month. PhD candidate Mariah Moe also collected drone imagery for her dissertation. Mariah is working to develop a predictive model for identifying high probability areas for unmarked graves in cemeteries throughout South Texas.

      The goal of the exhumations is to work towards positive identification and repatriation.


    • Congratulations to doctoral student and FACTS coordinator, Sophia Mavroudas, Dr. Nick Herrmann advisor, who has received a Fullbright Award to Greece for 2022-2023. Sophia's project is titled “An Anthropological Approach to Identification in Medicolegal Contexts,” and her goal is to investigate increased migrant deaths across Europe and America. She will be working with two Greek forensic practitioners to research Greece’s migrant crises from the perspective of the Greek medicolegal system.


    • 2022 SAA MeetingThe Society for Applied Anthropology annual meeting was held in March, 2022 in Salt Lake City. Speakers included PhD students Eric Gauldin and Rex Long, MA students Kai Hart, Kayli Lord, Tierney Proffit and Emily Repasky, and faculty Emily Brunson, Nicole Taylor and Angela VandenBroek. #sfaa2022 #appliedanthropology


    • Anthropology Career WorkshopDate | Thursday, April 7, 2022
      Time | 4:30 - 5:45 pm
      Online via Zoom | Contact Dr. Augustine Agwuele for Zoom link

      Join the Department of Anthropology as we explore job prospects and career options in Archaeology, Biological Anthropology, Cultural Anthropology, and Linguistics with an Anthropology Degree. 

      Please contact Dr. Augustine Agwuele for any questions or to join the discussion.

    • In this episode of the Anthropology in Business podcast, Dr. Angela VandenBroek speaks with Matt Artz about her career as a business anthropologist. The conversation covers Angela’s journey from consulting and studying innovation, to teaching applied anthropology at Texas State University. Episode available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher or wherever you listen to podcasts.

    • The Hearthstone Project is built on the results of the Alexandria Project and endorsed by the most prestigious national granting agencies in our field. This interdisciplinary and collaborative project with Texas State University is poised to reveal the mysteries of when and how the paintings were produced and what they were created to communicate. Dr. Phil Dering will be publishing a Hearthstone Project blog to keep you up-to-date with the project.

      Check out the blog to follow along on our journey to unlock the many stories of the Lower Pecos Canyonlands of Southwest Texas.


    • Congratulations to doctoral student Jennifer Barron, supervisor Dr. Michelle Hamilton, for receiving a Phi Kappa Phi Dissertation Fellowship. The award is to support students in the writing stage of the dissertation and is based on a student’s superior academic record and life/career ambitions.

    • Texas State University Anthropology students learned new skills in paleoethnobotany at Thursday and Friday's workshop at the new Archaeology Lab! Many thanks to our guest instructor Dr. Tim Riley (Utah State University-Eastern), the New Mexico Bureau of Land Management, FACTS, and Dr. Britt Bousman for their help and sponsorship!

      Student using microscopePhoto of Arch labPaleoethnobotany WorkshopWorkshop Group PhotoStudent working at workshop

    • Congratulations to FACTS for receiving a Community Partnership Award from the San Marcos Police Department for work that Danny Wescott, Sophia Mavroudas, JD Fancher and four students – Laney Feeser, Megan Veltri, Naomi Levin, and Hailey Collard-Stadler did on a forensics case. The team recovered skeletal remains and later identified the individual.

      JD Francher, Daniel Wescott, Sophia MavroudasFACTS Community Partnership Award

    • Congratulations to Drs. NicoleTaylor (PI) and Jana Minifie (Co-PI, Dept. of Management) who were awarded a $50,000 NSF I-Corps Grant. Their team includes anthropology dept. alumnus Alejandro Allen, who is currently working toward an MSW in the School of Social Work. Together, they will assess the feasibility of a diagnostic tool, potentially a downloadable app, to promote mindfulness around phone use and mitigate the effects of "always on" technology culture in the US. As part of the I-Corps program, they will also participate in a series of training sessions to learn about developing a business canvas model through customer discovery research.

    • Congratulations to Dr. Taylor who recently co-authored a book (with Dr. Mimi Nichter) about youth and social media culture. A Filtered Life: Social Media on a College Campus (Routledge, December 2021).

    • Doctoral students Petra Banks and Shelby Garza were both interviewed on the news in Mississippi about a recent FACTS workshop on identifying human versus non-human remains.

    • Congratulations to Dr. Steve Black, Amy Reid, and others at CAS who helped to put together an exhibition of archaeological materials from Langtry, Texas.

      In 2017, Dr. Black and Amy Reid received funding from the Bank and Trust of Del Rio to prepare artifacts from the Skiles Collection for this Exhibit. CAS’s work included a collection evaluation, inventory, rehousing, and conservation. In 2019, CAS entered into a cooperative agreement with the Skiles Family and the Bank and Trust of Del Rio regarding the use, management and exhibition of the collection.

      The collection came to CAS in 2016 as a loan from Mr. Jack Skiles, who was a long-time resident of Langtry, Texas, landowner and guardian of the Eagle Nest Canyon archaeological sites, author of Judge Roy Bean Country, keeper of the Skiles Collection (“Jack’s Museum"), and friend to generations of archaeologists and visitors. The Skiles Collection consists of Indigenous, Euro-American, and Asian cultural material. The Indigenous assemblage includes 1,685 artifacts collected from rockshelter sites within the Lower Pecos Archaeological region. Now, much of this material is on display in the Ancient Life In The Lower Pecos Canyonlands exhibit (see attached Reception Invite). In addition to the exhibit preparation, Amy assisted Dr. Black in the selection of artifacts for the exhibit and packaging for safe transport to Del Rio. Dr. Black developed all of the interpretive content for the Exhibit.

    • Congratulations to Dr. David Kilby whose archaeological research on Bonfire Shelter was recently featured in Texas Monthly.