AAMW Program Overview

The Graduate Group in the Art and Archaeology of the Mediterranean World trains students for careers in the art and archaeology of Classical and Near Eastern Civilizations. Drawing on the vast resources of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, AAMW incorporates fieldwork, museum internships, and university instruction into a flexible interdisciplinary program leading to the M.A. and Ph.D. All students accepted into the program are fully funded for a period of at least five years.

The faculty of the AAMW Graduate Group features an extraordinary array of distinguished scholars who represent virtually every major area in the study of antiquity. Most of the faculty are drawn from four departments in Penn's School of Arts and Sciences: Classical Studies, History of Art, Anthropology, and Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, although the resources of the Graduate School of Design, the Center for Ancient Studies, the Department of Religious Studies, and the Center for Advanced Judaic Studies are frequently utilized as well. AAMW students also have the opportunity to take courses at Bryn Mawr, Princeton, and Temple University, which form part of a regional academic consortium with Penn.



Emerson Avery defended his dissertation, entitled Marsala’s Hinterland: The Evolution of Roman Settlement in Western Sicily, in October and graduated in December. Recent AAMW grad Miriam Clinton is now Assistant Professor (tenure track) in the Department of Art and Art History at Rhodes College. AAMW 2015 grad Meg Andrews is Visiting Assistant Professor of Classical Archaeology in the Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World at Brown University. AAMW 2015 grad Jordan Pickett accepted a postdoctoral position at the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology, University of Michigan. AAMW graduate student Nurith Goshen (ABD) has accepted the position of Curator of Chalcolithic and Bronze Age Antiquities at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

Sarah Beckmann, Peter Cobb, Sophie Crawford-Waters, Lara Fabian, Nurith Goshen, Sam Holzman, Daira Nocera, Steve Renette, and Anna Sitz published articles on their research in 2015, and others have forthcoming articles. Nearly all AAMW students presented their work at conferences around the world. Steve Renette co-organized conference sessions on identity formation in peripheral contexts, and cultural heritage in the eastern Mediterranean and Middle East. 

Jordan Pickett was named an SAS Dean’s Scholar for 2014–2015. Sam Holzman and Anna Sitz were appointed Kolb Junior Fellows, thereby joining nine other AAMW Junior Fellows in the Louis J. Kolb Foundation. Steve Renette was named an Archaeology Fellow at the Institute of Regional and International Studies (IRIS) of the American University of Iraq, Sulaimania. Peter Cobb continues as Junior Fellow at Koç University Research Center for Anatolian Civilizations in Istanbul. Sophie Crawford-Waters was awarded a teaching fellowship at Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Germany, for summer 2016. Petra Creamer won the 2015 ASOR Annual Meeting Joy Ungerleider Best Poster Award for An Analysis of the Apotropaic Function of Terracotta Plaques

Lara Fabian, Anna Sitz, Lucas Stephens, and Kurtis Tanaka were awarded Dissertation Research Fellowships by SAS, and Sarah Beckmann received a Dissertation Completion Fellowship. Katherine Burge, Sophie Crawford-Waters, Petra Creamer, Olivia Hayden, Sam Holzman, Janelle Sadarananda, James Shackelford, Anna Sitz, and Kurtis Tanaka received Penn Museum 2015 Summer Fieldwork Grants. Three students are resident in Athens at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens in 2015–2016: Sam Holzman (regular member; Fulbright Fellow), Anna Sitz (associate member; Phi Beta Kappa Mary Isabel Sibley Fellowship), and Kurtis Tanaka (associate member, Canaday Spitzer Fellowship). Lara Fabian holds a Mellon Foundation- CLIR Dissertation Research Fellowship and a CAORC Multi-Country Research Fellowship to support research in Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia, Romania, and Bulgaria. Sophie Crawford Waters was awarded the Archaeological Institute of America’s Coleman Fellowship for research and travel in Italy in support of her dissertation. Steve Renette was awarded an Exploration Fund Grant from the Explorers Club and a Digital Humanities Forum Project Incubation Grant from the Penn Digital Humanities Forum (Price Lab) for his work in Iraq. James Shackelford received a Program of Ancient History and Art Scholarship from Columbia University for his fieldwork at Hadrian’s Villa; Daira Nocera was the Field Director of that project. Kate Morgan received a Platt Fellowship from the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) to support excavation at Zincirli in southeastern Turkey this summer; she and Lucas Stephens collaborated on an excellent short video on the project, which also starred AAMW grad student Olivia Hayden: http://asorblog.org/cause-view/excavations-at-zincirli-hoyuk-vlog/. Lucas Stephens was awarded a Mellon Humanities Urbanism and Design Project grant for his fieldwork. Katherine Burge and Reed Goodman both received Penn Museum and AAMW funding to participate in excavations at Ur, Iraq this fall. Olivia Hayden is the recipient of the Betancourt Fund for Teaching and Research in Aegean Prehistory, which she will use to assist in publication and web site construction for the Saronic Harbors Archaeological Research Project (SHARP) in Greece.

Sarah Linn (ABD) has taken part-time work at the Penn Museum as the Research Liaison. She currently advises the Provost's Year of Discovery student exhibit (on Kourion, Cyprus), as well as three undergraduate students participating in a new initiative, Penn Museum Fellows. Katherine Burge has been working with the ASOR cultural heritage initiative, and has taken part in planning for the renovation of the Middle East Gallery at the Penn Museum. Janelle Sadarananda was featured in an article on petrography at the Penn Museum’s Center for the Analysis of Archaeological Materials (CAAM) in the magazine Expedition.