Quetzil Castaneda, teaching student evaluations and comments. Maya Culture, Mayan Civilization, Maya Riviera, Yucatan, Mexico, Community Action Research, Ethnographic Installation, Maya Calendar, Maya 2012, Chilam Balam, Ah Dzib, Second Language Studies, Second Language Learning, Bilingual Education, anthropology of Art, anthropology of Tourism, the Maya World, Cancun, Merida, Playa del Carmen, Tourism studies, Medical anthropology, Maya healing and ritual, Field Study Abroad, Latin American Studies, Valladolid, Chichen Itza, Tulum, Ek Balam, Piste, Travel Mexico, Tourism Development, Ethics of tourism,

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Student Success and Achievements

Dr. Castañeda began to take undergraduate students from the University of Houston to Yucatán. In the first year, 1994, two students spent 8 weeks teaching English to the children of the community of Pisté. In 1995 and 1996, Castañeda brought students from Princeton and the University of Houston to learn Maya anthropology and ethnographic research methods. Students participated in a seminar on anthropological topics such as theory, ethnographic representation, Maya history and culture. They also were trained in fieldwork methods as they designed and conducted their own independent research projects.

Twelve undergraduate students participated in the three field seasons between 1994 and 1996. Student success is represented by the undergraduate major paper by Laura Bunt at the University of Houston and a Senior Thesis presented by Gisela Fosada at Princeton. Laura Bunt and Gisela Fosada used their fieldwork experiences in Pisté to enter Ph.D. programs in Anthropology at the New School of Social Research and University of Michigan.

In 1997 The Field School in Experimental Ethnography was developed as a project that combined pedagogy with research. Using the format of an eight week summer training program in ethnographic fieldwork methods, the School conducted research in three areas. These three are: The Chilam Balam Project in Memory and History; SELT, or The School in Experimental Language Training, and the Ah Dzib P'izté' Project in Maya Art and Anthropology. The Field School conducted research and training in four field seasons (the summers of 1997, 1998, and 1999 and the fall of 1999).

Between 1995 and 1999, more than 30 undergraduates and five graduate students participated in the Field School of Experimental Ethnography

Laurie Kovacovic’s experience in the 1997 and 1998 field seasons motivated her to begin and complete graduate work in TESOL; she is now a practicing TESOL teacher in Minnesota.

José Saul Martínez wrote his Master’s thesis at the University of Houston in the anthropology of education based on his research as the student director of the SELT program in 1998. Saul is now completing his Ph.D. in anthropology at the University of Texas.

Having participated in all three years of the Field School (1997 to 1999), Fernando Armstrong Fumero used his research experiences to complete a combined BA and Master’s degrees in anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania. His Master’s thesis (2000) explores the focus group research with Pisté artists that he designed and directed in 1998. Fernando is currently a Ph.D. student in anthropology at Stanford and conducting his doctoral dissertation research in Yucatán (2003-2004).

Ana Wandless participated in the 1997 and 1998 seasons where she worked on the Chilam Balam Project in Memory and History. She is currently working on her Ph.D. in Anthropology at Rice University.

Lisa Breglia, as Ph.D. student in anthropology at Rice, participated as Assistant Director in the 1998 and 1999 field seasons. Building on and extending the research she directed in the Field School, Breglia designed a dissertation project on the meaning of and conflicts over archaeological patrimony in Yucatán. After defending her dissertation in April of 2003, Dr. Breglia has been teaching at the University of Houston Clearlake and Rice University; in 2004-2005 she is visiting professor at Wesleyan.

Hutan Hejazi (BA University of Houston) participated in the 1999 field season, focusing on the Maya art project; he is currently working on his Ph.D. in Anthropology at Rice University.

Students Success and Achievement from OSEA 2005 to present

Mallika Bhandarkar (OSEA 2005) entered the Graduate Program of the School of Public Health Application Service at Columbia University

Isabella Stackl (OSEA 2005) completed a Masters degree at the University of Michigan School of Social Work

Jennifer Telesca (OSEA 2005) entered the PhD program in Law and Society at New York University

Matt Breines (OSEA 2009) returned to OSEA in 2011 to coordinate the Teaching English Language Service Learning Program before taking a Educational Counselor position at the Harlem Children’s Zone Inc. in New York City

Sarah Block (OSEA 2009) entered the Masters program in Anthropology in American University

Evan Holcomb (OSEA 2009) returned to OSEA in 2011 to teach in the Teaching English Language Service Learning Program

Sarah Johnson (OSEA 2009) completed her Masters degree in Latin American Studies at Indiana University

Brianna Myers (OSEA 2009) entered the Masters program in Speech and Hearing at Indiana University

Justin Quinn (OSEA 2009) entered the PhD program in Anthropology at University of Florida continues to do research in Yucatán on issues of Maya involvement in tourism development

Terrance Hall (OSEA 2010) entered the Masters program in Anthropology at Brandeis


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