In addition to the obvious FOSA activities of participating in field work, the Join Us membership application lists a number of interest areas where participation is available. A brief discussion of each of these follows.
In addition to the volunteer opportunities below, and in an effort to provide opportunities to FOSA members, we are currently seeking volunteers for several positions...
After a number of years of great service and dedication, FOSA's Corresponding Secretary Joan McCarthy is going to retire from the job. We are seeking a replacement for this volunteer position. The main job is receiving information about renewals and new members from the membership chair, and sending out standard cover letters and membership cards. For most of the year, the job entails several hours a month. There is somewhat more work in the January-March period when most memberships are renewed. Envelope and stamp costs are reimbursed by FOSA.
If interested in taking the position, or for more information, please contact Mike Raber, Membership Chair, at 860-633-9026, or via email by clicking firstname.lastname@example.org.
• FOSA Web Site Backup Person - A need exists for a backup to Jim Hall for the maintenance of the
FOSA web site. If you think you might be interested, the only prerequisite is that you must be a member of FOSA.
You need NOT have experience in designing or maintaining web sites. Technically, what’s used is HTML v-3 and a
interested but don’t have experience in the above, Jim is willing to teach you. You should find that ours is NOT
a technically complex website. For additional information, please click
• FOSA Event Photographer(s) – Provide photographic documentation of FOSA events (i.e., workshops, outreach efforts, annual meeting, etc.).
• FOSA Field Photographer(s) – Provide photographic documentation of FOSA excavations and other field activities. Responsibilities include photographing the site, excavation units, features and artifacts. No experience required as we will assist in training volunteers.
• FOSA Field Assistant(s) – Provide organizational and administrative support of FOSA excavations and other field activities. Responsibilities include ensuring proper documentation of the site, units, and features, organizing collected artifacts and additional documentation and organizational tasks as required. No experience needed as we will assist in training volunteers. This position will be less physically demanding that most fieldwork and does not require extended kneeling or standing.
• Mentoring Opportunity - FOSA Outreach Committee - Ken and Bonnie Beatrice have led the Outreach Committee since FOSA was founded. They continue to create and display educational and engaging exhibits at events throughout the state. Mentees will be given the opportunity to learn how to share with the public the exciting work FOSA does and to teach the public about archaeology. Volunteers will ultimately be encouraged to organize exhibits and represent FOSA at events in the future. If you're already a member of the Outreach Team and you’re looking to take on more responsibility you are especially encouraged to become a mentee!
• Mentoring Opportunity - Office of State Archaeology Library - Cynthia Redman has been diligently organizing and cataloging the library of the Office of State Archaeology located in the lab. at Horsebarn Hill Road at UConn, Storrs. She is looking to train a couple of volunteers who will become knowledgeable in how the library is organized, how to accession new materials, and to be able to assist researchers using the library.
For additional information on any of these items, or if you're interested in one of these opportunities, please e-mail FOSA Volunteer Coordinator Scott Brady, by clicking .
Archaeological Field Work involves any archaeological activity not done in the office:
• Excavating a particular site
• Mapping a site by a walk-over, placing flags at artifact sites; creating a pattern
• Underwater surveys
• Assisting ground penetrating radar (GPR) projects
• Conducting educational digs for school children.
Laboratory Analysis / Cataloging involves examining, analyzing and processing a wide range of historical and archaeological artifacts that come to the attention of the State Archaeologist, many of which are uncovered during OSA digs superivsed by the State Archaeologist. These activities take place at the laboratory at Horsebarn Hill Road, University of Connecticut campus.
All laboratory work is monitored by designated supervisors.
All volunteers are taught how to use resource materials:
• Projectile point catalogues
• Ceramic catalogues
• Animal bone directories, etc.
Volunteers learn to identify the various artifacts and to process the item. This process might include:
• Sorting the artifacts
• Cleaning the artifact
• Identifying the artifact
• Placing the artifact in a plastic bag
• Writing the location of the site, date of excavation, site number on the bag
• Listing chronologically the artifact number
• Taking measurements if appropriate
• Preparation for storage.
Artifact Curation (Permanent Collections Assistance) involves volunteers assisting in the areas of:
• Artifact inventory confirmation
• Artifact conservation suggestions
• Artifact catalogue creation.
Volunteers should have experience in:
• Artifact identification
• Knowledge of physical descriptive properties
• The more general management of museum activities.
The software used for permanent records is PastPerfect Museum Software, whose web site can be accessed by clicking .
Committees and Board of Directors
• The FOSA Board can have up to 15 Directors including the President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer. The State Archaeologist serves as advisor.
• Member terms are two years; half the Board is elected each year.
• The Board meets four times a year to approve annual budgets and expenditures, discuss FOSA objectives and policies with the State Archaeologist and coordinate committee work as needed.
• Nearly all Directors serve on at least one of the permanent committees:
> Annual Meeting
• Most committees are headed by a Director with other FOSA members often playing key roles.
• One Director serves as the Volunteer Coordinator whose work includes helping members becoming involved in FOSA activities and committees.
Education and Public Outreach involves manning a FOSA exhibit at public events such as the CPTV Science Expo, and various historical and archaeological activities. For more information and images from some of these, please click: .
Archaeological Illustration involves designing displays in keeping with the theme of the public events they are associated with. These displays are designed to demonstrate the many facets and disciplines that are included in archaeology. As often as possible, artifacts are worked into the exhibits, allowing the public to pick up and examine objects that are often accessible only to view behind glass. "Hands on" is a fundamental design goal.
Fund Raising involves:
• Identifying a need
• Appointing a chairman and forming a committee
• Developing a plan
• Developing details chosen for fund raising
• Implementing the fund raising
• Writing the Final Report and Evaluation.
Grant Writing involves:
• Identifying a need
• Identifying project-specific granting organizations
• Knowledge of the project
• Writing the grant request itself (requires excellent writing skills)
• Following up after the grant has been received.
Newsletter is published twice a year (in the Spring and Fall) and is printed through a commercial printer; tasks involve:
• Investigating archaeological news and events throughout Connecticut, with an "awareness" of the archaeological environment
• Contacting associated organizations and individuals for news, submissions and follow-up
• Writing, typing, editing and proofreading skills helpful
• Formatting newsletter in Microsoft Publisher
• Folding printed newsletters and mailing them to FOSA members
• Doing other duties that may arise in the Newsletter Committee.
• Photographing an archaeological site as the work progresses, including specific artifacts in situ and cultural features
• Printing a sample of the pictures for educational purposes
• Providing the Office of State Archaeology with a CD or DVD of all the images for reference in writing and illustrating reports.
OSA Library involves:
• Cataloguing incoming books, periodicals, journals, CDs, DVDs, and other materials
• Entering Library of Congress call numbers for books, journals, CDs, DVDs, and other materials
• Typing that number on a tab for books, journals, CDs, DVD, and other materials
• Entering data about materials into the computer database
• Shelving materials where appropriate
• "Reading the shelves" to ensure that materials are properly located.
Web Site and Social Media involves:
• Web Site
> Adding and designing additional requested pages/site content
> Updating content
> Keeping a calendar and contact lists current
> Screening for appropriateness, content
> Doing other duties that may arise in the Website Committee.
• Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Flickr)
> Adding and designing additional pages / displays / site content
> Examining viewer commentary and modifying or deleting any offensive or inaccurate material periodically.
Historical Research and Report Writing involves:
• Writing a report following the completion of work at a particular site, describing the purpose for the project and the results. It contains the following:
> Introduction covering the purpose and scope of the project
> Background material covering the location/site of the project
> A description of the historical background and environmental aspects
> Conclusions and Findings/Results
• Volunteer help would focus on the:
> Background material
> The State Archaeologist completes the remaining areas. The Site Report is filled out and signed by the State Archaeologist.
CT Archaeology Center / Museum involves:
• Exploring a number of exciting and challenging areas of responsibility, including:
> Presenting an educational program
> Guiding visitors through the exhibits
> Working behind the scenes.
• Volunteers go through a basic orientation program, being trained and mentored by experienced museum personnel. The orientation covers such topics as:
> Museum operating procedures
> Personnel policies
> Exhibit and program interpretation and presentation
> Benefits of volunteering.