faq (question answers)
There are a number of ways to get involved with AFAR. We are very fortunate to have individuals contribute financially and physically to our efforts. Financially, we receive support for student scholarship and archaeological site preservation. Making a donation in any amount can support scholarships or named scholarships can be arranged for individuals donating at the level that allows a student to receive a full scholarship. Many other individuals have donated their talents to make AFAR the amazing organization it is. If you have a talent and want to share it, please let us know.
Since its inception, AFAR has worked to provide opportunities for deserving students regardless of their financial means. Our ability to supply financial aid to students with financial need has made this possible. Although the fueling of the financial aid pot is dependent on donors, we have assisted over 100 students in participating in AFAR projects. Please visit our SCHOLARSHIP page to see how to apply or visit our DONATE page to see how you can help.
AFAR brings many benefits to the projects that they partner with and we regularly get inquiries about teaming up with new projects. Among the benefits AFAR brings are skilled manpower, financial support, analysis, site preservation, publication opportunities, and local economic stimulus. If you think an AFAR student team could benefit your project, please reach out to us.
As AFAR grows, we are always looking for great students and schools to partner with. Teachers, administrators, and counselors are often the individuals that notify great students of the opportunities AFAR has to offer. We also have motived teachers and administrators that pursue school-based cohort sessions with AFAR. These are great experiences as the students can prepare for the projects together before the fieldwork and disseminate their research results together once they return to school. If you are a teacher, administrator, or counselor who would like to hear more about these opportunities, please reach out to us.
Our field school programs are carried out exactly like college programs but are geared to high-achieving pre-collegiate students. Some of our partners offer college field school components and we
occasionally have special sessions for adult students. Please contact us and we will gladly help organize a field experience that is suitable.
The majority of speakers on the Maya at the Playa and Maya at the Lago Conference series are invited and are selected based upon the Lifetime Achievement Award recipient however, we have opportunities for current professors and graduate students. If you would like to be considered as a speaker at one of our conferences, please drop us a line.
We are proud of the amazing lineups that we’ve been able to offer over the last eleven years and it’s made possible through ticket sales. We want to make the conference available to anyone interested in participating so we offer special rates to current students in need of financial support. If you aren’t currently a student and need financial assistance to participate, please reach out to us as well.
No. All cultural material discovered is the property of the government in which they are found. Many of the discoveries that we’ve made over the years can be found on display in museums both in the country of its discovery and abroad but is entirely at the discretion of the government.
The AFAR Board of Directors and AFAR staff considers several factors when determining the appropriate age of project participants. The government of the countries, in which we work, dictate the parameters.
AFAR enlists a team of professionals and support staff for every project. Although the majority are volunteers, we prioritize those individuals with professional specialization in the field of archaeology. There are numerous outside projects for parents and adults to participate and AFAR can help connect anyone interested.
Project fees cover full room & board, fieldwork training, seminars & workshops, excursions & other activities, transportation to & from airport to site, medical insurance, an application fee, and the administrative costs to conduct an excavation (permits, artifact preservation, specialists, etc.)
AFAR works with a travel tailor for all of our projects. If you need help with any logistics, we can connect you with our team.
AFAR has created a list of rules that govern the activities of our crew. These rules are in place to ensure the safest experience for our participants and those around us. Students and parents must sign behavioral contracts in order to participate in our research projects. Please see the AFAR Behavioral Contract for details.
We suggest that students without little international travel experience limit themselves to one two-week session. Those who are more experienced or feel confident that they will thrive for a longer period of time should contact us. Cases will be assessed on an individual basis.
Working on an archaeological site can be challenging. We intentionally start work early in the morning to minimize time working in the hottest time of the day. Work includes digging with picks and shovels, moving dirt with wheelbarrows, and bending over to perform detailed work with trowels and brushes. Because this type of work is unnatural to students, it may take several days for them to get acclimated. Luckily, there is always a pool or river to cool off in after a hot day of work.
The project teams will be supervised at all times by a minimum of two program directors and the AFAR staff. Our programs directors have extensive experience digging at many different kinds of sites and under difficult conditions. They bring a great deal of experience and energy working with the high school groups. All students are required to be with at least one other student or a program director at all times, and staff will always be informed of the students’ whereabouts.
Students with international experience are at a tremendous advantage when applying for college. But the AFAR experience is much more than a trip overseas. Students work on an actual archaeological site – experiencing the daily work of an archaeologist. There simply is not another equivalent opportunity out there today for pre collegiate students. Many universities have identified that the AFAR project experience on the student’s submission differentiated them from their peers. Our alumni includes students who have gone on to esteemed universities including MIT, Brown, Tulane, and Wake Forest to name a few. Here is a note from the Tulane Admission Office regarding their view of the AFAR experience.