LAS CRUCES Two students in the Department of Anthropology at New Mexico State University have received scholarships from the American Archaeological Association.
Sabrina Gonzalez, a junior anthropology student, was named the newest Sheryl L. Weiss Memorial School at NMSU, in 2021 while Robin Cristofani, who received the scholarship last year, was selected again this year. The Wase Scholarship provides funding for students to expand their interest and studies in archeology.
The Wase Scholarship is named after archaeologist Cheryl L. Wase, who spent most of her career working in New Mexico. She died at the age of 53 in 2004. When her mother, Jane Frances Weiss, passed away in 2013, she bequeathed a bequest to the American Archaeological Society to award her a memorial grant in her daughter’s name.
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“It is a game-changer because it covers tuition and fees, as well as course books and field classes, and is renewable for several years until students graduate,” said Rani Alexander, department chair and professor of anthropology. .
The Wase Memorial Scholarship is awarded competitively to female undergraduate students residing in New Mexico studying for a bachelor’s degree from a fully accredited University of New Mexico majoring in Anthropology with a concentration in Archeology.
“I took a class of 315 anthropology, and an introduction to archeology, and I’ve never been more excited about what my future entails,” Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez still has no field experience. She plans to attend the annual field school for the Department of Anthropology in the summer of 2022. This year’s field school was held at the site of the village of Twin Pines, located in the Aldo Leopold Wilderness part of the Gila National Forest and associated sites with the Cañon de Carnue Land Grant east of Albuquerque.
“Thanks to the Wase scholarship,” she said, “I can now push myself to learn more about archeology and soon get some hands-on experience.”
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The Wase Memorial Scholarship is renewable for up to five years, as long as the recipient remains enrolled, maintains the required GPA and continues to pursue a degree in anthropology with a concentration in archaeology.
Ruben Cristofani is grateful for the second year of support.
“Receiving the Cheryl L. Weiss Memorial Scholarship, all of my hopes and dreams of being in the field of anthropology/archaeology have come true,” Cristofani said. “Because of this scholarship, I can go to school without the stress of paying tuition fees so that I can focus on my major.”
Applications for Wase Scholarships in 2022 are currently being accepted. Visit www.saa.org or contact Rani Alexander, Bill Walker or Kelly Jenks at NMSU Anthropology to learn more.
Billy Huntsman writes in the Department of Marketing and Communications at New Mexico State University and can be contacted at email@example.com.