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  • Locations: Caesarea, Israel
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • This program is full, or the deadline has passed.
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Program Description:
Caesarea City and Port Exploration Project

Location and Dates:

Caesarea, Israel
Arrive in Tel Aviv on May 11th, 2022 and depart from Tel Aviv on June 7th, 2022

Course Credit: 
AMS 305:
Travel-Study in Europe, the Mediterranean, and Near East; 4 credits
AMS 315: Fieldwork in Material Culture; 2 credits
Foundations Credit for F9 and F11

Program Description: 
This course introduces students to the history and archaeology of the Near East from Roman times to the Middle Ages (ca. 1st century B.C.E.-12th century C.E.) by working and living at the ancient city of Caesarea Maritima on the west coast of Israel during the month of May. Caesarea was the lavish port of Herod the Great, the Roman provincial capital, a thriving commercial center during the Roman and Byzantine eras, a leading marketplace and stronghold under the Islamic caliphates, and a Crusader fortress: a meeting place of cultures and religions throughout its history. Students participate in on-site archaeological research at Caesarea, attend practical seminars and lectures on the kibbutz where they lodge, and visit sites and museums in central to northern Israel.

The Caesarea Excavations, directed by Professor Joseph Rife and Philip Lieberman from Vanderbilt University, and under exclusive license from the Israeli Antiquities Authority, furnish an opportunity for students at the introductory level to join in an interdisciplinary research program at a Mediterranean site of long-term historial and archaeological significance. The 2022 season of the Caesarea Excavations will involve intensive excavation of the north side of Temple Platform and the south-central district of the decumanus maximus, an area first occupied by Herod’s great Temple to Roma and Augustus and a dense adjacent neighborhood, then by the episcopal complex surrounding the Octagon, perhaps by the lost Great Mosque, and finally by an Abbasid to Fatimid souk. Through daily tasks students will learn the basic skills of archaeological fieldwork: techniques of digging, architectural and geospatial recording, and the collection, identification, conservation, and documentation of artifactual and biological remains.

An essential feature of this course is the experience of living and learning on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean. The schedule entails a daily routine of excavating and processing finds with occasional afternoon lectures or practica and three weekend excursions to other regions. Apart from learning about and contributing to archaeological research, students will examine the religious, cultural, social, and economic history of the Roman to Medieval eras through primary and secondary scholarly sources as well as the archaeological record. Students will also engage with those aspects of modern Israel from it's founding in 1948 to the present, while they stay on a kibbutz and travel to sites of historical and cultural significance: Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and the Jordan Valley from Galilee to the Dead Sea.

$5800. Cost will cover room, board, transportation within Israel, excursions, and admission to cultural sites. Transportation to and from Israel is not included

Eligibility Requirements:
Minimum GPA 2.5 and good academic and social standing.

Contact: Kenny Morrell;

Need-Based Scholarship Available:
  • All students on Summer Programs will be considered for a need-based scholarship if they have completed a FAFSA and have at least a 2.75 GPA.
  • Not all students will receive an award. Need based award amounts vary, based on each student's individual FAFSA information. Some awards may cover up to 100% of the program cost, though that is rare.
  • Students choosing to withdraw their Off-Campus Study Application for a Rhodes Summer Program* must do so by February 14. Following February 14, Rhodes′ "Program Fees and Billing" Policy, and Rhodes′ "Cancellation and Refund" Policy will apply. Follow this link to review our Policies.

This program is full, or the deadline has passed.