The SAC is made up of student volunteers with different specializations and studying various topics in archaeology.

Chair - Vanessa N. Hanvey

Hanvey_Digging Sapelo2

Vanessa N. Hanvey is a doctoral student at the University of Kentucky. She graduated from the University of Georgia in 2011, with her B.A. in Anthropology. Upon her graduation, she was hired by the Arkansas Archeological Survey as Research Assistant. Working at the Henderson State University Research Station, Vanessa conducted research alongside Dr. Mary Beth Trubitt. She is currently studying how the quarrying, manufacture, and trade of chert as a toolstone may have affected social transformations in the Late Archaic time period in the Flint River valley of Georgia.

Chair-Elect - Patrick Johnson


Patrick Johnson, a PhD candidate at the College of William and Mary, received his BA from Beloit College and MA from the University of West Florida. His dissertation about eighteenth-century Yamasees of Spanish Florida uses historical documents, pottery, iconography, and objects of adornment to explore the role of rhetoric and material culture in colonial Native American political and daily life. He posts on William and Mary’s graduate student anthropology blog, on and Twitter.


Webmaster - Tyler Stumpf


Tyler Stumpf is a doctoral student at the University of Kentucky, and previously received a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Georgia. Currently his primary research interests include initial contact in the Southeastern United States, consequences and culture change as a result of European contact in Georgia, the De Soto Expedition and other Spanish exploration into the La Florida interior, trade, architecture, ceramics, and the missionization of the Georgia coast and interior. His dissertation research focuses on exploring architectural variability as a proxy for understanding culture change as a result of contact.


Member at Large - Christina Sampson


 Christina Sampson is a doctoral student at the University of Michigan, and she previously completed a B.A. in Anthropology at Barnard College. Her interests  include social organization and domestic spaces, iconography and ritual, historical ecology, and coastal settlements in the Southeastern U.S. Christina's  dissertation research at the Weeden Island site in St. Petersburg, Florida is focused on community organization, foodways, and participation in regional trade  networks, primarily during the early Safety Harbor period.


Member at Large - Karen Stevens


Karen Stevens is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Kentucky. She graduated from Appalachian State University, with a B.A. in Anthropology and a B.S. in Chemistry. Her current research focuses on Archaic period hunters and gatherers of the Green River Valley of Kentucky. Her dissertation work will examine the impact of paleoenvironmental factors, as seen through isotope signatures in freshwater shell remains, and hunter-gatherer economics and sexual divisions of labor, as contributing factors in the cessation of shellfish accumulation in the Green River Valley.


Member at Large - Michelle Rathgaber


Michelle Rathgaber is a doctoral student in the Environmental Dynamics program at the University of Arkansas.  She earned her BS in Anthropology and Zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her MSc in Osteoarchaeology from Bournemouth University in the UK.  Her current research stems from work she started as an employee of the Arkansas Archeological Survey.  It focuses on the Mississippian period of NE Arkansas and SE Missouri and the earthquakes of the New Madrid Seismic Zone.  Specifically, she is looking at how people living in that area responded to the large (M6-8) earthquakes of the AD1450's and the associated localized environmental and landscape changes that they brought about through sand blows and ground subsidence.