For Immediate Release — Tuesday, July 14, 2008
David Irwin
Media Relations Officer
(585) 245-5516

MEDIA ADVISORY:  Indiana Jones at SUNY Geneseo?

GENESEO, N.Y. – Well, not exactly but 60 Rochester City School District middle school students may feel like the fictional archaeologist when they spend two weeks on the SUNY Geneseo campus July 14-27 at the Rochester Young Scholars Academy.   As part of this year’s theme, “Discovering the Iroquois in Geneseo,” students will take part in several days of actual archaeological digging on campus at an excavation site believed to be the location of prehistoric Native American artifacts.  They also will participate in indoor lab analysis of their finds and other activities related to archaeology.

We anticipate excellent photo and interview opportunities at the excavation site and in the  laboratory and invite your coverage of the event.   Please contact David Irwin in the SUNY Geneseo Office of Communications and Publications (585-245-5516) for days and times when students will be digging at the site or working in the lab.   NOTE: Digging is weather dependent and scheduled weekdays only.  A town hall presentation showcasing the students’ work and a graduation ceremony are scheduled during the last day of the camp, July 25, in the ballroom of MacVittie Union.

The recent release of the popular film “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” coincides with the camp, which has been in the planning stages since last year’s program.

“We’re fortunate that we can ride the tide of the recent ‘Indiana Jones’ film,” said Susan Norman, camp director and director of the Xerox Center for Multicultural Teacher Education at SUNY Geneseo.  “Even though most of our campers will know little about archaeology, they probably will know about Indiana Jones and will quickly learn there is real science involved in uncovering our past.”

The excavation the 7th and 8th grade students will be doing is part of a project that SUNY Geneseo archaeologists have been pursuing after discovering Native American artifacts on the SUNY Geneseo campus. 

“We have suspected for quite some time that a Seneca longhouse, or multi-family residence, existed on campus and were able to confirm a prehistoric site recently using ground penetrating radar,” said Kristi Krumrine, who teaches anthropology at SUNY Geneseo.   “We aren’t sure yet of the time period of this find but these campers are joining us on the front end of the discovery, which is very exciting for them and us.”

Last summer’s camp theme was “C.S.I. – Crime Scene Investigation” and activities focused on forensic science.

Funding for this year’s camp is being provided by the Xerox Corp., SUNY Geneseo, the Rochester City School District and the New York State Assembly.