Get Involved

At SECAR, we run a continuous archaeological field school from January – August each year (rolling deadline). The SECAR idea was initially conceived to provide people interested in archaeology with an opportunity to participate in a real archaeological excavation. Field school members are not required to have been on a dig previously. However, this does not mean that people with a few archaeological excavations under their belt are not welcome. We tailor our field school to the particular needs of all our students.

Taking part in our field school, you learn all dimensions of archaeological field- and lab work, including excavation- and survey techniques, archaeological drawing and photography, artifact processing, identification and conservation, report preparation, legislation, and much more. During the field school you will be completely immersed into the island’s history. You will receive presentations and lectures about artifacts we find, the island’s history and archaeology, and archaeological methods and techniques. We frequently have visiting professors that present their research at SECAR. If students have particular interests or have a particular project they would like to work on (for example thesis research), we can provide the necessary guidance. Our field school is therefore also particularly suited for archaeology/anthropology students.

Our schedule includes fieldwork in the mornings (8am – 12) and lab work in the afternoons (1 – 4pm) from Monday to Friday. On Fridays we have a half-day excursion or field trip to other sites around the island. Weekends are free and can be spent relaxing on the beach, kayaking, exploring the beautiful historic town, snorkeling or scuba diving on some of the best dive sites in the Caribbean, or hiking the spectacular trails on the dormant Quill volcano. For more information on things to do on the island, please visit the ‘The Island‘ section.

Our field school students come from all over the world. We usually have a good mix of male/female, younger/older people, and different nationalities.

Unfortunately, it is no longer possible to enroll for a terrestrial field school for the year 2019. Currently, we are trying to set up a new project for the year 2020. We do, however, still require interns that are interested in aiding us with our artifact collection (see Internships below).

Underwater Field School

The waters around St. Eustatius house an astonishing number of shipwrecks and other archaeological remains. SECAR is actively involved in the study and protection of these underwater archaeological resources. We organize an underwater archaeological field school twice a year during which anyone who is interested can participate.

The field school consists of a 2-week program that is packed with adventure and exploration.

Participants will be in the water most days exploring, surveying, or excavating shipwreck sites and other submerged archaeological remains. This is complemented by presentations, workshops, hikes and excursions.

Our underwater field school opportunities are posted on The Shipwreck Survey’s website, www.theshipwrecksurvey.com. For more information, contact info@theshipwrecksurvey.com or our underwater archaeologist Ruud Stelten at ruudstelten@gmail.com.

Internships

Apply for any of the internships listed below by sending your CV (with experience relevant to the position) and cover letter to info@secar.org or use the form for information below.

Internship Position: Collections Management / Database Entry
Minimal Qualifications: BA/BS in Anthropology/Archaeology/Museum Studies
Work Schedule: 40 hours

Financial: This is an unpaid internship, but we do offer free lodging at our facility

Description: The intern will participate in SECAR’s ongoing collections management program by assisting SECAR staff with cleaning, organizing, photographing, cataloguing, and curation of the SECAR in-house artifact collections. This internship focuses on teaching and improving skills related to artifact processing, identification, storage and collections management. Previous experience with basic artifact identification would be advantageous but is not a prerequisite. Other duties include assisting with preparation of public outreach materials, such as the setup of local and traveling exhibits for museums and other research centers. Additional responsibilities may encompass reconstruction of ceramic, glass, and other fragmented artifacts. This internship also may include administrative tasks related to collections management, such as inventory or cataloguing of collections, data entry, and maintaining and organizing digital files associated with the collections.

Practical Information

How to Get Here

The only way to get to St. Eustatius (EUX) is by small Winair plane from St. Maarten (SXM). Tickets can be booked on www.fly-winair.com.

Several airlines have direct flights to St. Maarten from the US and Europe, including:

  • US Airways from Charlotte
  • Delta Airlines from New York- JFK and Atlanta
  • United Airlines from Newark
  • American Airlines from Miami
  • Westjet and Air Canada from Toronto
  • KLM from Amsterdam
  • Air France from Paris

What to Bring

When packing, remember to dress appropriately for the season, the activities we will be doing, the beach, and downtime. Dress on the island is normally very casual with few exceptions. For excavating, please also bring long pants and long sleeve shirts. If you are not used to the Caribbean sun, long pants and sleeves protect you! This might seem ‘too hot’ to work with in the field, but people get serious sunburns really easily here. Also bring a hat, good shoes for digging/hiking, swimwear, sunscreen, a backpack, insect repellent, and any medications you may need. Electrical outlets on Statia are the same as in the US, so you might need a converter. We have all the excavation materials you need, but if you prefer, you can bring your own trowel. We have plenty of bedding at SECAR, but please bring your own towels. If you like to snorkel and/or scuba dive, you can bring your own equipment. This is also available for rent at the two local dive shops.

Please keep in mind that the flight to Statia is in a small Winair Twin-Otter 18-seater plane, which is sometimes not able to bring all luggage to Statia at once. Sometimes, your luggage will arrive on the next flight, so make sure to have all essentials in your carry-on luggage.

Costs

Below is a table of costs for participation in our field school. It is also possible to stay at SECAR and use our facilities without participating in our program. Many other students and visiting professors take advantage of this opportunity. The costs for non-field school stays are as follows:

$20 per night
$100 per week
$350 per month

Week #

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

Tuition

$350

$325

$300

$275

$225

$225

$125

$125

Housing

$200

$175

$150

$125

$125

$125

$125

$125

Week total

$550

$500

$450

$400

$350

$350

$250

$250

Long-stay Total

$550

$1,050

$1,500

$1,900

$2,250

$2,600

$2,850

$3,100

Tuition includes: Staff salaries, equipment costs and maintenance, building maintenance, vehicle maintenance, etc.
Housing includes: Spacious dorm-style accommodation with attached bathroom, fully equipped kitchen, cable TV, wireless internet and washing machine. Food usually costs about $75/week (not included).
Long-stay total is the total if one stays for a given number of weeks.

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