Department of Earth Sciences

Faculty Mentor:  Dr. Ryan M. Parish

Department:  Earth Sciences

Contact Information:  (901) 678-2606;

Project Description: The student will assist Dr. Parish and his graduate student in the hyperspectral lab learning the operation and use of two non-destructive spectrometers in the analysis of a large collection of rock specimens. The analysis of the collection will help archaeologists determine where on the landscape prehistoric people obtained stone for the manufacture of stone tools. The student's primary responsibilities include analyzing over 5,000 stone samples in creation of the first ever chert spectral library. Hours are flexible, proper training and supervision will be given throughout.

Requirements: Self-disciplined, patient, and self-motivated students are welcome.

Application or Interview process: A short cover letter (1 to 2 pages) and a brief interview are requested.

Hours per week: Flexible, minimum of 3 hours per week

Starting Date: Ongoing

Compensation:  Volunteer 


Faculty Mentor:  Dr. David H. Dye, Professor of Archaeology

Faculty Mentor's Department: Department of Earth Sciences

Contact Information:, (901) 678-3330

Project Description: Students may participate in archaeological laboratory research, including photography, artifact analysis, and database construction. Field trips and photography at local collections and museums may be involved from time to time. Research is currently underway on late prehistoric artifacts from the Memphis area, including pottery and shell analysis, with emphasis on ritual and cosmology.

Requirements for Student Applicants: Students should have one introductory course in Anthropology or Archaeology.

Starting Date: At student's convenience

Method of Compensation: Volunteer or academic credit through honors projects or independent study on a case by case basis.


Faculty Mentor: Dr. Hsiang-te Kung

Faculty Mentor's Department: Department of Earth Sciences, Confucius Institute, Asian Studies and International Trade Program

Telephone Number and/or E-mail: 678-4538;

Project Description: Environmental Hazards and Justice; Water Resources (Flood and Drought, Water Supply); Chinese Culture/ Economic Growth and Environmental Impact.

Requirements for Student Applicants: Any honors students who have interest in these areas

Starting Date: At Student's Convenience

Method of Compensation ( Volunteer, Academic Credit, or Stipend): Open


Faculty Mentor: Dr. Andrew Mickelson

Faculty Mentor's Department: Dept. of Earth Sciences

Telephone/E-mail: 678-4505/

Project Description: Students can participate in archaeological fieldwork and/or laboratory research and processing of archaeological samples and artifacts.  Research is currently being conducted at several prehistoric Indian sites within western Tennessee.  Transport to sites is provided and we return to Memphis at the end of each day.  Fieldwork requires the physical ability to walk long distances and carry heavy loads at times.  Sorry, special needs students cannot be accommodated in the field, but options exist in the lab on a case by case basis.

Requirements: Students must have taken at least one introductory course in Anthropology (preferably ANTH1100) or in Earth Sciences (ESCI 1103 or ESCI 2301 or ESCI 4352 or ESCI 4325)

Starting Date – open, dependent on level of degree of participation by student

Method of Compensation:  Volunteer, Academic Credit, or Stipend – volunteer or Academic Credit through honors projects or independent study on a case by case basis


Faculty Mentor: Dr. Esra Ozdenerol

Faculty Mentor's Department: Earth Sciences


Phone: 678-2787

Project Description: 1) West Nile Virus in Shelby County: I use GIS and Remote sensing techniques to explore the mosquito habitats and clustering analysis where the infected mosquitoes are and the effected human cases. I am working with the Shelby County Health Department on developing a model to lower the amount of cases in our county and explore ways how to do better intervention. 2) Low birth weight and infant mortality: Birth and death records from the Tennessee Department of Health are obtained. I am applying clustering analysis techniques to find out where the most vulnerable places are in Shelby County.

Requirements: Computer knowledge. GIS techniques a plus, but not required. I also prefer web and programming skills, if any.

Starting Date: At student's convenience.

Compensation: Right now, I do not have funding, but it is on its way. So I can say voluntary—soon to be funded.