Technicians are key in supporting our academic colleagues and students in the practical elements of teaching and research. Over the next few months we will be profiling a range of our technicians, finding out more about their roles and their journey to becoming a technician.
1. Where did your interest in archaeology come from?
I always knew that I wanted to be an archaeologist. When I was a child I was always collecting stones and looking for artefacts around my grandparents’ farm in Spain. When I started school I realised that I loved history and mythology but that I loved the sciences too. I couldn’t choose between the sciences and humanities so quite unusually I studied Chemistry, Physics, History and Art.
2. What did you study at university?
Whilst deciding what to study at university I discovered I could study environmental archaeology in the UK so I packed my suitcase with 20 kilos and I
came here to start my BSc in Archaeology. After my degree I worked as an Environmental Archaeologist with various commercial archaeological
companies, travelling all around the UK. Whilst working I started a part-time MSc in Geoarchaeology which offered a combination of field and lab work and I knew that I had found what I wanted.
3. What did you go on to do after your Masters?
I was then very fortunate to be offered a PhD that combined field archaeology and laboratory work at Plymouth University. It was my first experience in a Geography Department and where I first realised that a lab technician role provided everything I enjoyed: lab work, field work, research and working directly with students. During my summers I volunteered as an archaeologist around the world with field summer schools. I went to Ecuador, Crete and Spain, where I was teaching students and digging at the same time. When I finished my PhD I returned to environmental archaeology as a consultant but when the opportunity to work in the Geography Department at Royal Holloway as a Palaeoecology Technician appeared there was no doubt that I was going to apply.
4. What do you enjoy most about your role as a Palaeoecology Technician in our Department of Geography?
I have been at Royal Holloway for four years now. I really like the Department of Geography and my role as Lab Technician. I am able to contribute to some of the research projects being led by the academic and research staff, and get involved in a variety of field trips. My favourite thing about being a technician however is working with the students and helping them develop their own laboratory skills.