Opportunity of a Lifetime for Anthropology Student

May 14, 2013 by University of La Verne

Junior Sabrina Consiglio is one of only 30 students chosen from around the world to study on the island of Gozo this summer. Photo courtesy of Michelle Niellose.

Sabrina Consiglio wants to experience the world.

She now has that opportunity thanks to the Off the Beaten Track program in the Republic of Malta on the island of Gozo.

“Most of the students who attend the Off the Beaten Track program are graduate students, so I did not have expectations of acceptance, but I am so tremendously excited and grateful,” Consiglio said.

Touted as a summer school for anthropologists, Off the Beaten Track is an anthropology field school that is held annually on the island of Gozo in the Mediterranean. Only 30 Students from around the world are selected to participate in the program to acquire “in the field” experience, which includes anthropological research about architectural sites and religious sites, tourism, ethnic relations and food.

Consiglio, a junior anthropology student at the University of La Verne, who has received unwavering support from her family, has also received tremendous support from Professor of Anthropology Dr. Kim Martin and Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Dr. Felicia Beardsley and she attributes that support to her success.

“The program was brought to my attention by Dr. Martin, who has been an unwavering supporter of me throughout my time in the Anthropology department,” Consiglio said. “She and Felicia Beardsley encouraged me, and helped me to perfect my research proposals.”

Many social norms in the United States such as divorce and women in industry are relatively new constructs to the Maltese people. During her time in Malta in the summer 2013 program, Consiglio will conduct ethnographic research on the evolving role of women on the island of Gozo. She will write a paper about her findings at the conclusion of the trip and she hopes to be published in the Omerta Journal of Applied Anthropology.

“The biggest thing that I hope to gain is real-world experience,” Consiglio said. “You can spend years reading, writing, studying, and discussing, but at the end of the day, until you have actually researched and done what you’ve studied, it is all completely theoretical. I believe that anthropology has the ability to decimate gender barriers, and it is through researching and furthering knowledge of the positive changes that are transpiring world-wide.”

After graduation in 2014, Consiglio plans to continue her education in anthropology and eventually earn her Ph.D. in anthropology and eliminate degradation on a global spectrum.

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