Alumnae Honored for Outstanding Service to Connecticut Archaeology and Historic Preservation

Sarah Sportman

UCONN anthropology alumnae, Sarah Sportman and Mandy Ranslow, are recipients of two separate awards for their outstanding service to the archaeology and historical preservation of Connecticut. Sarah Sportman, Senior Archaeologist and faunal analyst at the Archaeological and Historical Services, Inc., is the recipient of the Lyent Russell award for service to the Archaeological Society of Connecticut. Lyent Russell was one of the most dedicated members of ASC and served as its president in the 1940s. The winner each year is chosen by the previous three winners and is presented in recognition of “outstanding contributions to the Archaeological Society of Connecticut.” Sarah will also be taking over as editor of ASC’s Bulletin of the Archaeological Society of Connecticut, starting in 2019.






Mimi Findlay (L), Mandy Ranslow (C), along with CT Trust Executive Director Daniel Mackay (R). Credit: New Canaanite

Mandy Ranslow is the recipient of the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation’s inaugural Mimi Findlay Award for Young Preservationists for her “decades-long and far-reaching work in historic preservation.” The Mimi Findlay Award will recognize individuals or groups of people 35-and-younger involved in preservation of historic buildings, districts, landscapes or sites in Connecticut. Mandy is currently an archaeologists and transportation planner in the Office of Environmental Review of the state Department of Transportation.




Elic Weitzel Co-Winner of 2017 SAA Student Poster Award

Congratulations to archaeology graduate student, Elic Weitzel for winning the Society of American Archaeology’s prestigious 2017 Student Poster Award with his co-author Daniel Plekhov from Brown University at the Annual Meeting in Vancouver, BC. Their poster was entitled Contact-Period Settlement Changes in Eastern North America: A Test of the Ideal Free and Ideal Despotic Distribution Models.

Merrill Singer Wins Medical Anthropology Career Achievement Award

Congratulations to our very own Dr. Merrill Singer for winning the 2016 Medical Anthropology Career Achievement Award! This award senior scholars who have “advanced the field of medical anthropology through career-long contributions to theory or method, and who have been successful in communicating the relevance of medical anthropology to broader publics.”


SMA Awards

Congratulations to this year’s REP winners!

Big congratulations to our three faculty members that were awarded in this year’s Research Excellence Program at UConn! The awarded projects are listed below:

Richard Christenson, PI, Civil & Environmental Engineering
Eleanor Shoreman-Ouimet, Co-PI, Anthropology
William Ouimet, Co-PI, Geography & Center for Integrative
Creating New Opportunities for International Research in
Disaster Science


Gideon Hartman, PI, Anthropology
Margaret Rubega, Co-PI, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Where Have All the Birds Gone? Using Stable Isotopes to Solve
the Mysterious Decline in Migratory Insectivorous Bird


Alexia Smith, PI, Anthropology
Examining the Modern and Ancient Morphological and Genetic
Diversity of Grape in Armenia


Jay Schensul received an honorary doctorate from NC State Uni

Jay Schensul, Ph.D. (University of Minnesota) is an affiliate of our Anthropology program. On May 7, 2016 she received one of the three honorary doctorates bestowed by North Carolina State University at their commencement ceremony. She is also the 2010 recipient of the Bronislaw Malinowski Career Award given annually by the Society for Applied Anthropology of which she was President from 1995 to 1997. Jay has a long career as a community leader and an applied anthropologist in Hartford with both the Hispanic Health Council and the Institute for Cultural Research, which she founded. We celebrate this recent honor and her many achievements and contributions to medical anthropology at UConn!
Jay Schensul

A.Petrillo was awarded Kenyon Fellowship honorable mention

A big congratulations to graduate student, Ashley Petrillo who was awarded an Honorable Mention for the prestigious Dienje Kenyon Fellowship at the Society of American Archaeology Annual Meeting in Orlando last weekend. The Kenyon honors outstanding female students in zooarchaeology.
Recipient: Ashley N. Petrillo
Ashley Petrillo has developed an engaging research proposal on ‘The Development of Dairying Economies in the Southern Levant.’ This study will focus on the nature of dairying and the use of secondary products from the Chalcolithic Period to the Early Bronze Age (c. 4 000-2000 B.C.E. ) which is critical to understanding the rise of social complexity. Milk provided a storable and sustainable source of nutrient rich protein and fats (cheese and yogurt) that could be traded and transported. She will select an array of sheep, goat, and cow dentin samples to conduct stable isotope analyses to explore human weaning and management strategies during this important period of developing complexity. This award hereby acknowledges the importance of her proposed research and its future success.

Alex Brittingham received Richard Hay Student Paper Award

Our Old World Archaeology graduate student Alex Brittingham received last week the prestigious “Richard Hay Student Paper Award” given annually for the best student presentation or poster in archaeological geology at the annual Geological Society of America Meeting. The awarded presentation was titled: “Late Pleistocene Paleoclimate Reconstruction at Lusakert Cave, Armenia.” Congratulations Alex!
Alex Brittngham