MSU Museum highlighted two Department of Anthropology students this semester as their “Featured Students.” Both Blair Zaid and Grace Krause are PhD. candidates in archaeology.
Blair Zaid, a Ph.D. Candidate in both African American and African Studies (AAAS) and Anthropology, received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Michigan State University. For the past two years Ms. Zaid managed the volunteers and curation projects for the anthropology and archaeology collections at the MSU Museum under the supervision of Dr. William Lovis. Work with archaeological collections inspires her because it offers an opportunity to learn about a wide breath of Michigan historical and prehistorical topics, something she does not focus on in her own research, while helping students to develop a curiosity for archaeology and human cultures. Blair’s doctoral research is focused on the early Iron Age Bantu speaking people of west Africa, particularly the settlement strategies in the Congo River Basin and broader patterns of prehistoric cultural change in Africa and the African Diaspora. In addition to her research, she enjoys teaching, participating in the MSU Museum’s Annual Darwin Discovery Day, and visiting the MSU Museum with her family.
Grace Krause completed her bachelor’s degree in anthropology from The University of Chicago. Ms. Krause has been working in museums such as The Field Museum and The Oriental Institute in Chicago for over a decade. She began volunteering at the MSU Museum in 2011, and then working there in 2012 as the coordinator of the Human Ancestors Program. Grace is also the chair of the Mid-Michigan Graduate Women in Science Mentoring Program. Ms. Kraus plans to complete her Ph.D. in Anthropology during next academic year. Her dissertation looks at foodways in the historical period in New Orleans.
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