The Slavia Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging and supporting archaeological research in Poland. Through the Slavia Project, they offer opportunities for students to participate in current archaeological excavations, to learn archaeological techniques and explore details of Polish history that are of yet unknown. Poland's rich history provides a treasury of information about people, cultures and events of the past. Several historic sources mention the 'Black Death' and cholera epidemics in the Notec river region which decimated the inhabitants of that area during the years 1621, 1639, and 1661. One of those epidemics killed almost the entire population of Drawsko. Oral tradition suggests that the dead were buried on the slope of a small hill situated on the outskirts of the village. Today the hill, a silent witness of history, is believed to be haunted and is a source of local legends and stories. This does not seem to interfere with intensive agricultural work which has been damaging some of the graves, not only those from the 17th century but the prehistoric ones as well. The Slavia Project emphasizes rescue work including anthropological research on the site which aims at exhumation and examination of the bone remains and burying them again in another more appropriate location.
Full Summer: Late June-Late July
Summer 2: Late July-Mid August
Students typically receive 6-9 credits on this program.
Through this field school, students take part in an archaeological works, getting hands-on experience in excavation of human burials and related archaeological features from their discovery to final removal. Students spend at least 6 hours a day in the field learning burial excavation techniques and documentation methods. The Slavia Foundation offers an intensive course in human osteology and mortuary archaeology at the basic and advanced levels led by experienced English — speaking instructors. The course also offers a strong laboratory component which includes an opportunity to practice identification of complete and fragmentary human skeletal remains, as well as other osteological analyses.
Students stay in one school house. Students will be split between multiple available rooms, but should be prepared to share their space with other students of the same gender (i.e., we do not provide private rooms). Every student will be assigned an air mattress, and small pillows are also provided, but it is necessary to bring some sort of bedding (sleeping bag, blankets, etc). You may also consider bringing an additional pillow.
To get started you should stop by the Programs Abroad Office Resource room! General Information Sessions are held everyday at 2:00pm and our Peer Advisors are always available to get you started. Make an appointment to meet your study abroad coordinator!