ECU students investigate shipwreck site in Washington

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WASHINGTON, N.C. (WNCT) – Students and instructors in East Carolina University’s maritime studies program are getting back to the water.

The pandemic forced the cancellation of the program’s summer field school.

“We’re actually doing archaeology which is pretty fun and it’s what I want to do for the rest of my life so it’s nice to get a little taste of it,” explains second-year student, Amber Cabading. 

ECU students are investigating a shipwreck in Washington. 

“We have a long history of producing very practical archaeologists because we do so much field intensive coursework”, says Dr. Jason Raupp with the ECU Maritime Studies Program. 

The program lets students experience real maritime archaeology. 

Cabading says, “We are mapping what we think is a schooner and it’s laying this way and it’s tilted on its side a little bit and we have the baseline running down the middle of the ship so I am working on this unit over here meters like 1 to 5.”

Students work in a dark environment.  

Will Nassif is another ECU maritime studies student.

He explains, “The biggest challenge again it’s just you can’t really see what you’re looking at until you just have to stick your face right up next to it and that’s what these guys are doing.”

This field work prepares students for future careers and also introduces them to people who live around forgotten history.

“I would say my favorite part about doing my research has been getting out here meeting people in the local community,” says Nassif. 

ECU professors are grateful to do this fall field school, even with the pandemic and look forward to the students continued research. 

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