Clarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University (APSU) junior Jane Seage is heading to a romanian archaeological site in Transylvania this summer.
The physics and classics double-major will conduct a multifaceted and large research project using ground-penetrating radar at an ancient Roman villa in Romania.
“I’m going to learn about archaeological and geophysical techniques, the culture and history of the area and the impact the Romans had,” she said. “It’s a really exciting opportunity for me and is going to be a vital learning experience since I’m considering going into archaeology.”
The research opportunity gives Seage a chance to use her odd pairing of majors. Getting an opportunity to study an ancient Roman villa excited her classics side and learning more about ground-penetrating radar techniques piqued her physics side.
“I’d never really considered archaeology as something I wanted to do until I started thinking about combining my classics and my physics together,” she said. “There’s a lot of stuff that’s art or art history and archaeology that’s classics-focused but also make use of my more science-minded skills.”
Adding Classics To A Science Mind
Seage started at Austin Peay as a physics major but picked up studying classics her sophomore year.
“The classics make a lot of sense to me, it’s like solving a puzzle,” she said. “Taking all the different parts and putting them together makes a lot of sense to me. Ancient Rome and Ancient Greece is so cool.
“If you were to ask me my favorite person now, I’d say Julius Caesar.”
Seage is considering studying archaeology in graduate school.
“I’m interested in archaeology because I love classics, it’s a foreign language, the puzzle-solving aspect, but at a certain point, you’re just reading literature, and when you’re reading literature, you write essays about literature, which is not super-exciting for me, so I think archaeology provides a different perspective that is more concrete,” she said. “I’m attracted to the lab aspect of archaeology, but there is a lot of field experience, actually going out to a dig, like what I’ll be doing this summer.”
Grants Help Get Her to Romania
Seage is able to go to Romania because of a College of Arts and Letters research grant and a honors study abroad scholarship.
“Getting the grant was a huge relief since the deadline for the trip’s fees were coming up and this was my only way to really pay for it,” she said.
“Three people emailed me about it, and they were like, ‘Jane, this has physics and classics, you have to check it out,’ and I’m like, ‘Yeah, that sound like exactly what I want to do.’”
Personal relationships like that have enhanced Seage’s experience at Austin Peay State University.
“I’ve definitely learned more about myself,” Seage said. “Austin Peay has provided a lot of opportunities for me that I might not have gotten at a bigger school. You get a lot of individual-level learning with your professors.
“It feels more approachable.”
To Learn More
- For more about the project Seage will participate in, visit https://www.archaeotek-archaeology.org/roman-villa-excavation.
- Read more about this year’s College of Arts and Letters dean research grants at apsu.edu/news/news-images/december-2018-arts-and-letters-grants.php.
- For more about classics degrees, go to apsu.edu/classics.
- For more about the Department of Physics, Engineering and Astronomy, visit apsu.edu/physics.