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Fact Sheet:
Language of instruction: English Minimum GPA: 2.25
Housing: Hostel Area of study: Anthropology, Archaeology, Classical Studies
Program type: Field work Class Status: 1-freshmen, 2-sophomore, 3-junior, 4-senior
Program Description:
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The San Martino Archaeological Field School is a summer program designed to teach students about archaeological field and laboratory methods, geophysical prospection in archaeology, and the archaeology of ancient Italy. The course is taught on site in central Italy, and participants learn through first-hand experience excavating at the San Martino site as well as through lab work, assisting in geophysical studies, lectures, readings, and guided museum and archaeological site visits. Participants live in the small town of Torano di Borgorose, where they have the opportunity to learn about life in modern as well as ancient Italy.  No previous archaeological experience or knowledge of Italian is necessary to participate in this program, although prospective participants should note that this is an intensive program that requires physical stamina.

An abbreviated overview of the program follows.  A more detailed description can be found at the San Martino Archaeological Field School web page.


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This is the tenth season of excavation at the San Martino site in Torano di Borgorose, Italy. The site's archaeological sequence runs from the prehistoric period up to the present day, with archaeological material from every time period in between, including evidence from the Chalcolithic period, a polygonal wall that was part of a pre-Roman or Roman structure, extensive remains of a Roman villa, and a medieval church.  The site stands to offer important data about: (1) settlement characteristics in the Chalcolithic period, as no other habitation site from this period has been found in the vicinity; (2) the dating, use and significance of polygonal masonry terracing, a type of ancient architectural feature widely present in central Italy, but rarely studied on the basis on excavation data; (3) the nature of the production and trade of pottery in the area in the late antique period; and (4) the dating of ancient earthquakes and other environmental events in the region.
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Work at the site in 2017 and subsequent years will be carried out with the goals of: increasing our understanding of the earliest phases of the site, uncovering a larger expanse of the villa, completing excavation of the late antique strata at the site in order to reach the Roman republican and imperial levels, and conducting further geophysical testing to locate other areas of archaeological interest at the site.  On-site training is supplemented with regular class meetings and field-trips to museums and archaeological sites in Rome, Sulmona, Alba Fucens, Avezzano, and Rieti.

Accommodations and Meals

Participants live in the town of Torano di Borgorose in hostel-style accommodations, with cots for three to six people in each room and shared bathrooms and showers. Single rooms are not available, and participants should be prepared to live in shared space. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are provided during the week and on some weekend days. Breakfast is self-service, with cereal, milk, fruit, cookies, coffee, and tea available. Lunch is taken picnic-style at the site. Dinner is either a hot meal prepared by a local cook for our group or a meal prepared in a local restaurant.  Participants also have access to and are welcome to use the kitchen on their own.


The cost for the 2017 program is $4,950. This cost includes: two nights in a hotel in Rome, transportation within Italy, room and board as described above, museum admission fees, and tuition for 6 credit hours from the University of Rochester. It does not include the cost of airfare or course textbooks.

University of Rochester students are eligible for a $500 travel voucher.  In addition, some limited scholarship money may be available for University of Rochester students with demonstrated financial need. UR students who have demonstrated financial need and wish to be considered for these scholarships should indicate their interest on the program application form. Scholarships will be awarded on the basis of merit within the pool of students with demonstrated financial need.


Application deadline: 31 March 2017.  Applications received before 1 March will be accepted on a rolling basis.  In other words, if you are interested in early admission to the program, please submit your application before 1 March 2017.

NEW Scholarships for Summer 2017!

Apply for the new UR Summer Faculty-Led Scholarship here

Apply for the Lisio Scholarship for Italian Studies here

Contact Information

Professor Elizabeth Colantoni
Department of Religion and Classics, University of Rochester, Box 270074
Rochester NY USA
Telephone: 585-275-9360

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Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2019 03/15/2019 03/15/2019 TBA TBA