Dr. Alexandra Jones started the Washington, D.C.-based project Archaeology in the Community in 2006 to make the study of archaeology something that members of her community could engage with outside the bounds of traditional academia. While completing her PhD in Archaeology from the University of California at Berkeley, Jones worked with local schools to create archaeology curricula. When she returned to her home city of Washington, D.C., she found that many of the young students from her old neighborhood had never heard of archaeology—let alone met an archaeologist. Jones made it her mission to bring archaeology to her community in a way that could connect local students to their own histories and open up the possibilities of future careers in history and archaeology. Jones’s continues to work in academia in tandem to her work as a community leader as the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of AITC; she is an Assistant Professor at Baltimore Community College and Adjunct Professor at the University of Baltimore.
Archaeology in the Community became an official nonprofit organization in 2009. Since its inception, it has continued to facilitate educational programs, hands-on learning opportunities, and public community events that bring archaeology and history to students of all ages and backgrounds. Some of the programs organized by AITC include a Young Archaeologist Club, an Archaeology camp, a blog called “Digging into Archaeology,” an annual Day of Archaeology Festival, and public talks about history and archaeology.
Image courtesy of Archaeology in the Community.