Student Opportunities

Information for Prospective Graduate Students

Dr. VanDerwarker is always seeking quality graduate students whose interests encompass the New World and the archaeology of food.  She is open to students who plan to study anywhere in the New World, but especially Mesoamerica and the Eastern Woodlands (Midwestern & Southeastern United States).  Interests in food can be broad and need not be related to complex societies, but students should have plans to incorporate at least one type of method supported by the Integrative Subsistence Lab (Macrobotany, Microbotany, Zooarchaeology).

If you are interested in applying to UCSB Anthropology’s graduate program to work with Dr. VanDerwarker, please introduce yourself by email.  You are also encouraged to contact any of her grad students featured on this page to get a better sense of your fit with the program and Dr. VanDerwarker’s style of mentorship.

For more information on the graduate program in Anthropology and the program requirements, visit

Internship Opportunities for Undergraduates

Dr. VanDerwarker takes between 2-8 undergraduate interns per quarter. Note that Dr. VanDerwarker does not take interns in the summer.  Students who are interested must demonstrate their interest and maintain at least a 3.0 GPA.  Students need not be anthropology majors, and previous lab experience is not required.  However, those students who have successfully completed ANTH 3 (Intro to Archaeology) or an equivalent course in basic archaeological methods are preferred.

For information on possible internships in Dr. VanDerwarker’s lab, email

In your email, make sure to provide the following information:

  • Current GPA & Major(s)/Minor(s)
  • Current Class Standing (e.g., Sophomore, Junior, etc.)
  • Whether you have completed ANTH 3 or equivalent
  • Why you are seeking this experience

These opportunities are also advertised through the FRAP Directory

Interns generally register for variable units in ANTH 99 (underclassmen) or ANTH 199 (upper classmen)

  • Form for ANTH 99 (fill out top half of form and bring to me once I have approved your internship)
  • Form for ANTH 199 (fill out top half of form and bring to me once I have approved your internship)

For each course unit enrolled, students work three hours/week (e.g., 4 units of ANTH 194P = 12 hours of lab work per week)

Internship tasks may include:

  • sorting archaeological materials,
  • assisting in the identification and analysis of ancient animal bones and plant remains,
  • processing soil samples through water flotation to recover plant and animal materials,
  • assisting with data entry and literature searches,
  • re-organizing collections, washing bones, etc.