Archaeology Field Experience at the McKendry Site, Irving, New York

Undergraduate students opening a test unit during archaeology field work.

Archaeology Field Experience and Research at the McKendry Site provides: Opportunities for Student Engagement with Artifacts and Radiocarbon Dating. 

Project description

The aim of this project is to introduce students to archaeological field work in an actual pre-contact archaeological site setting. This represents a real-world experience conducting archaeological field and laboratory research and working towards a publication of the results. Students will assist with on-going excavations of the McKendry Archaeological Site and use existing charcoal samples to obtain a Radiocarbon date for the site. This data will be used to produce a report on the McKendry site for publication in the Bulletin of the New York State Archaeological Association. Students will have the opportunity to excavate an archaeological site, learn how to record archaeological data, and how to work on a collaborative research project reporting data collected about the McKendry Site. 

Project outcome

  • Students will learn excavation techniques used in Cultural Resource Management
  • Students will collaborate to produce a final research report on the McKendry Archaeological Site for Publication in the Bulletin of the New York State Archaeological Association including data they collected in the field and interpreting a radiocarbon date obtained from collected charcoal samples.
  • Students will produce a brief power point or written description of the archaeological techniques they learned about and describe their experience as project team members to be shared with fellow students.

Project details

Timing, eligibility and other details
Length of commitment 3-5 months
Start time Field work beginning November 5th, with research and laboratory work throughout the remainder of the fall semester and early spring semester. 
In-person, remote, or hybrid? In-Person Project
Level of collaboration Large group collaboration (4+ students) 
Benefits Experience
Who is eligible All undergraduate students 

Core partners

  • UB Anthropology Department
  • UB Archaeological Survey
  • Dr. Perrelli
  • UB Anthropology Club
  • Site Steward John Mckendry

Project mentor

Douglas Perrelli

Clinical Assistant Professor


Phone: (716) 645-2297


Start the project

  1. Email the project mentor using the contact information above to express your interest and get approval to work on the project. (Here are helpful tips on how to contact a project mentor.)
  2. After you receive approval from the mentor to start this project, click the button to start the digital badge. (Learn more about ELN's digital badge options.) 

Preparation activities

Once you begin the digital badge series, you will have access to all the necessary activities and instructions. Your mentor has indicated they would like you to also complete the specific preparation activities below. Please reference this when you get to Step 2 of the Preparation Phase. 

Students should familiarize themselves with the principles of Cultural Resource Management based archaeology in New York State by reviewing the NYS Archaeology Cultural Resource Standards Handbook and familiarizing themselves with the work of the UB Archaeological Survey by visiting the Marian E. White Anthropology Research Museum in the Academic Center.

Students may also consider attending a meeting with the UB Anthropology Club to learn more about the project and collaborate with other project members. Meetings hosted every Tuesday in Academic Center 354 at 5PM


Anthropology, Archaeology, History, Environmental Studies, Indigenous Studies, Cultural Resource Management, Historic Preservation, Field Work, Artifacts, Radiocarbon Dating