"I liked how the archaeology department appeared to value the importance of Indigenous archaeology and has a number of long-term projects with First Nations communities. I feel this is particularly important among the archaeological sciences."

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Student Profile: Lauren Clark

March 03, 2022
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Archaeology master's student in the Faculty of Environment

I'm from Kalispell, Montana and completed my undergraduate degrees in Biology and Anthropology at the University of Montana in Missoula. My interests in genetics, wildlife conservation, and human history led me to the field of ancient DNA. I was lucky enough to have lots of interesting lab and field experiences during my undergraduate studies that ultimately prepared me to continue my education at SFU. When not in the lab, I'm usually out on a trail somewhere running, biking, hiking or backpacking.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO COME TO SFU?

I liked how the archaeology department appeared to value the importance of Indigenous archaeology and has a number of long-term projects with First Nations communities. I feel this is particularly important among the archaeological sciences (i.e. stable isotope or DNA analysis) in which it is necessary to use, and ultimately destroy, potentially culturally important organic material to answer questions about people of the past.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR RESEARCH OR YOUR PROGRAM TO A FAMILY MEMBER?

I'm currently studying how ancestors of the Xwisten band in interior British Columbia may have changed how they hunted deer during a time of subsistence stress around 1300 years ago by using ancient DNA to identify the subspecies and sex of deer remains found at an archaeological village site called Bridge River.

WHAT ARE YOU PARTICULARLY ENJOYING ABOUT YOUR STUDIES/RESEARCH AT SFU?

I love the ability to collaborate on projects and have interesting conversations about research with other students in my lab and department who have similar interests in archaeology and conservation.

HAVE YOU BEEN THE RECIPIENT OF ANY MAJOR OR DONOR-FUNDED AWARDS? IF SO, PLEASE TELL US WHICH ONES AND A LITTLE ABOUT HOW THE AWARDS HAVE IMPACTED YOUR STUDIES AND/OR RESEARCH.

I was awarded the Dr. Jack Nance Memorial Scholarship and the Canadian Pacific/Teck Resources Award as well as a few graduate fellowships and travel & research awards from my department. This funding has allowed me to continue my studies at SFU without significant financial stress.

 

Contact : ltclark@sfu.ca

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