Ashley Moodie’s goal has been to become an archaeologist since she first travelled to Latin America in her early 20s.

“I loved Mexico and Colombia and eventually found myself hiking Machu Picchu in 2017,” says Moodie, a third-year Bachelor of Arts student majoring in Anthropology and minoring in Classics. “Seeing the site in person was incredible. After that, I wanted to study anthropology, get a degree and become an archaeologist. There’s never been any hesitation.”

There has been a lot of work. A mature student, Moodie wanted to get through her undergrad quickly, so she has squished her four-year degree into three. Even with her busy schedule, her passion for anthropology has only grown. The more she learned and the more experience she gained, the more she knew she had made the right decision. 

"Accessing fieldwork experience without travelling far away was a huge plus.”
Ashley Moodie

One of those experiences was taking ANTH 495: Public Archaeology Field Placement with Dr. Cynthia Zutter. Each summer since 2015, up to four MacEwan students are placed at the Bodo Archaeological Site & Centre near the Alberta/Saskatchewan border – the largest site in Western Canada and one of 40,000 archaeological sites in Alberta alone.

“Having a field school on your resume looks incredible, but getting there can be expensive and inaccessible for many students. Accessing fieldwork experience without travelling far away was a huge plus.”

That wasn’t the only reason Moodie is a champion for Bodo. In addition to her work excavating the site and bagging and cataloguing artifacts to send along to the Royal Alberta Museum, she was leading group tours, school groups and summer day camps. 

She says that the six-week internship's range of experiences makes it a great opportunity for students across several disciplines – classics, history, geology, and even early learning. 

But for Moodie, the internship was the chance to test out her chosen career. “This is the job,” she says. “It’s so exciting to make a find, especially when you’re working with kids. Seeing them so excited and talking about how this was the best day ever was sweet for me and one of my favourite parts of the experience.” 

Interested in adding a field school or experiential learning to your university experience? Check out the Bodo internship or visit MacEwan’s Careers & Experience.

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