Make The Connection

Archaeological Field Work

October 22, 2019 – by Madison Bridger ’21

Bridget Roddy ’20 works to excavate a portion of the Halmyris archaeological site in Romania. On one day, she found 17 ancient Roman coins. (Photo courtesy of Bridget Roddy)

The OWU Connection Takes Student to Romania to Explore Site of Roman Fort

Name: Bridget Roddy ’20
Hometown: Mount Vernon/Fredericktown, Ohio
Majors: Sociology/Anthropology and Psychology
Minor: International Studies
OWU Connection Experience: Archeology at Halmyris

Roddy earned a University-funded Theory-to-Practice Grant to spend a month in Romania over the summer to serve as part of the 2019 volunteer excavation team at the Roman fort of Halmyris.

Volunteers are helping to excavate the site of Halmyris, a Roman fortress in the Danube Delta, Romania. (Photo courtesy of Bridget Roddy)

Why I Chose This Experience

“I was originally interested in the Archaeology at Halmyris project because while studying abroad in Ireland two semesters ago, I visited the Roman auxiliary fort of Vindolanda in Northern England. I wanted to have the opportunity to visit the Halmyris site to make connections, if there were any, between the two. ...

“Archaeology has also been something I have been interested in, so this felt like the perfect opportunity to discover if this was something I would continue to do later in my life.

“I wanted to go somewhere where I would able to break from the classroom setting and gain real, applicable skills, that would be beneficial to me in the future. I knew that what I learned from the country of Romania and the work we would be doing on the site of Halmyris, would be worth investing a month of my summer into, and in the end it certainly paid off.” 

My Favorite Moment

“My favorite moment was actually an entire day I spent uncovering multiple ancient Roman coins. Usually they find two to three coins per dig season from several trenches; however, I found 17 in total from the one trench I was working in!”

Lessons Learned

“This experience gave me more than I bargained for [and] allowed me to gain incredible insight into the world of archaeology. From being able to identify context layers, to recognizing metal and bronze artifacts among the soil, I felt that I was putting my classroom lectures to work out in the field.

“I was also able to meet some incredibly intelligent members of the archaeological field, and it was an honor to be working alongside them.

“Three years ago, when I came to OWU, never in a million years did I think I was going to be able to travel to Romania to do archaeological field work.”

My Plans After Graduation

“I am still in the decision-making process of trying to discover what I wish to do after graduation, but hopefully whether I decide to go to graduate school or start looking for a job, having a practical skill-set that can be applied in a range of fields would set me apart from other applicants.

“By having had the chance to further explore field archaeology, I feel better prepared for leaving OWU to take the next step in my journey. Although archaeology is a wide field with many avenues to choose from career-wise, I like the idea of working in a museum or with artifacts, something I came to enjoy after we unearthed small/special finds.

“Wherever I end up, I know that my Connection experience has helped me immensely in so many ways!”

Why I Chose OWU

“I chose to attend Ohio Wesleyan because as a person coming in undecided, the range of majors was very appealing. I loved their emphasis on travel, the resources they provide, and the financial aid they offer!”