History Reveals Future Opportunities

Thanks to the American Anthropological Association (AAA) internship program, one UCF student traveled to Washington, D.C. this past summer and experienced the vast opportunities present in the anthropology field. Karina Nogueras spent her time conducting research for the United States Navy as well as analyzing the learning objectives of various anthropology departments nationwide to make note of the wide range of careers open to those majoring in the field.

Nogueras’ internship consisted of two parts. She worked for both the AAA offices and the Underwater Archaeology Branch within the United States Naval History and Heritage Command.

With the Navy, Nogueras worked to create outreach material for naval commemoration of their World War II-era submarines through independent research. Through a process of making measurements, maps and drawings from photographs, she helped with the photogrammetric reconstruction of a ship from the Revolutionary War. She also digitalized records of World War I cruisers.

While at the AAA, Nogueras focused on discovering the potential future paths of anthropology majors by analyzing nation-wide anthropology departments. She researched the learning objectives these departments had in place for the four subfields of anthropology: biological anthropology, archaeology, sociocultural anthropology and linguistics. She also interviewed students who graduated with anthropology degrees to note the career paths they took after graduating.

“The perspective and experience that I gained from the internship was invaluable,” Nogueras said. “When I first began, I was focused on research and attending graduate school immediately after finishing UCF. As I interviewed individuals through my project and worked alongside my supervisor, Dr. Daniel Ginsberg, I quickly saw the wide range of careers that anthropology majors delved into.”

At the end of her internship with the AAA, Nogueras published the results of her research as a paper.

Nogueras first found out about the internship opportunity offered by AAA through UCF’s anthropology club, Hominids Anonymous. Nogueras is the treasurer for the club. This semester, she is also the president of UCF’s chapter of Lambda Alpha, the National Collegiate Honors Society for Anthropology. As president, she organizes and directs meetings and coordinates guest speakers.

“My main goal is to get the honor society recognized as a registered student organization by UCF before I pass the position to someone else,” she said. “It’s been an incredibly long and tedious process but with the help of the wonderful executive board I am confident we will be successful at the end of the semester.”

Nogueras uses her role as president to share professional and educational opportunities available for anthropologists to other members. Thanks to knowledge gained from her internship, she is able to tell members how other anthropologists applied their hobbies and their degrees to find jobs they truly enjoyed.

“My advice to current students is to always apply to any opportunity you have interest in, because there’s no way to know the outcome if you don’t try,” Nogueras said. “I was hesitant about applying to this internship because I didn’t think I would be chosen. It ended up being the best experience of my educational career.”

UCF now offers a Ph.D. in Integrative Anthropological Sciences. Learn more.

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