Following the split of a combined unit into separate divisions of Anthropology and Sociology in 1968, a small group of students decided to join the new department. Together they made their way to consult with Dr. Nathan Altschuler, the founder of the Department. Upon hearing that all six of his visitors wanted to become anthropology concentrators, Altschuler replied in characteristic fashion: "Why?"
The answer to that is still being worked out, I suspect, but none of the homecoming visitors at the Department's first ever Homecoming Reception, from the first through the most recent graduating classes, seemed to express any regrets. Our initial reception was not only well but enthusiastically attended, the main corridor was filled with laughter and cries of recognition and delight (I'm not kidding, it was loud in there!) and every drop of fresh apple cider was consumed. And we were honored by visitors from both our first and our most recent graduating classes.
|Jaclyn Kuizon, Dr. Mary Voigt and Dr. Danielle Moretti-Langholtz share a laugh.|
|Let's face it -- grad students are always ready to eat! Kelly Walter and Sarah Byrd enjoy the cookies.
Ken Birkett (‘70) was not only a member of that very first class, but his wife Judy (‘71) was a member of the second class of Anthro majors, and their daughter Courtney (MA ‘04) received her graduate degree from the Department and is employed locally as an archaeologist. One of many W&M families!
|Mike Birzenieks '70 and Ken Birkett '70||Judy ('71) and Courtney (MA'04) Birkett|
Mike Birzenieks (‘70), also of that very first class and his wife Melinda were primed to meet their old friends the Birketts. Mike's career has been in pro tennis, which goes to show just how flexible an Anthro degree can be. By the way, not only were Mike and Ken members of that first group, but our own recently retired Virginia Kerns was another co-conspirator. (Don't worry, Dr. Kerns – they didn't dish too much and we know how to keep a secret.)
Suzanne Frayzer (‘65) graduated from the original combined department. When asked if she and her fellow students were allowed to choose the discipline which appeared on their diplomas, she laughed and replied in the negative. After teaching anthropology for many years at several universities, Suzanne is now living in Hawaii doing PR for the Subaru Telescope on the Big Island.
|Suzanne Frayzer '65||Jeff Parker '80|
Jeff Parker (‘80) is still an archaeologist in his soul, even if the paychecks come from elsewhere these days. ‘Dusty' Einseld (‘84) had many fond memories of her time in the ‘Burg and is now a green energy consultant working with Power Shaver, an electrical energy management company. Jennifer (Kaiser) Carver (‘76) and Kathy Duncun (‘90) made short trips to attend; Jennifer lives in Yorktown and Kathy in Gloucester. Kathy recalls the fun she had working on various archaeological projects.
|Cathy Duncan '90 and 'Dusty' Einseld '84||'Tonia Deetz Rock '02 and Dr. Barbara King|
Among more recent grads, Tonia Deetz Rock (‘02) was glad to talk about her new job, which will take her to the Washington, DC area. Kay McLaughlin (‘07) is currently an editorial assistant at the National Academy of Sciences in DC; her fellow classmate Benjamin Skolnik (‘07) is currently working in archaeology. Other recent alums who touched base include Jenn Dutcher (‘09), Judith Andrews (‘06), Cameron Van Buskirk (‘03) and one of our newest grads, Alex Guillen (‘10), currently residing in Wilmington DE.