Specialist archaeologist

Rebecca uses the skills from her Master of Arts to promote and protect archaeological sites.

Key facts

Career: Specialist archaeologist
Programme: Master of Arts
Subject: Anthropology

I currently work as a Specialist Archaeologist in Auckland Council’s Heritage Unit. I provide specialist advice on resource consent applications and projects across the Auckland Region that have archaeological and heritage concerns. This is a diverse and challenging role, which takes me to a range of amazing archaeological sites that the Auckland Council aims to promote and protect.

For as long as I can remember I have always wanted to be an archaeologist. An Arts Degree allowed me to pursue this passion while also exploring other interests in Geography and Environmental Science which all complemented my studies in Anthropology.

My Arts degree has given me a varied and adaptable skill set that has been incredibly beneficial to my role and career.

My anthropological skill set has been useful, as well as my skills in critical thinking, report writing, collaboration and research, which I use on a daily basis.

One of the highlights of my career has been the opportunity to meet and work with a range of people and communities across the region. Communicating with them and educating them about importance of their heritage has been very rewarding.

I have also been involved in the surveying, upgrading and monitoring of the Waitakere Ranges heritage resources. This project has expanded my knowledge of Auckland’s history and given me the opportunity to explore the outdoors at the same time.

My advice to students is to get networking because anthropology, and especially archaeology, is a small field in New Zealand! There are plenty of volunteer opportunities out there, so gain as much experience while you are studying – you never know where it might lead.

Most importantly find what makes you passionate and stick to it!