Sarah Beal inspects a ceramic artifact in the lab

Sarah Beal, a Ph.D. candidate in the UC Department of Classics, has won the Graduate School's Three Minute Thesis Competition. The competition challenges students to present their research in three minutes with a single PowerPoint slide. Sarah presented on her dissertation, "From Symposium to Convivium: Social Life in Roman Athens," which explores the locally-produced tablewares excavated from homes around the Athenian Agora dating to the 3rd century CE. Her dissertation prioritizes the function and utility of tablewares over typologies, allowing for a deeper examination of the social dynamics behind how people were eating their food.

In addition to the Three Minute Thesis, Sarah was chosen by the Graduate School as the Doctoral recipient of the 2021 Excellence in Teaching Award. Sarah will now be nominated by the university to compete for both the Three Minute Thesis and Excellence in Teaching awards through the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools.

Members of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra record onstage in an empty hall

The Outreach Program has always been invested in engaging new audiences and bringing them closer to what we love most: Classics. This is our mission, but we need to step out of our comfort zone, if we want to offer to the public an unforgettable experience. The pandemic may have forced us behind a screen, but did not stop us from envisioning the future. And the future is multimedia and it!
We came together with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Cincinnati Opera for a new, exciting project: offering talks with musical content. Everyone loves music and its power to sweep us away to a different world: why not combine it with our talks? 
CSO and Cincinnati Opera agreed on offering high quality performances, recorded specifically on request by their talented and passionate artists. Outreach talks will start regularly and end with a beautiful surprise: a captivating musical selection, created from partner organizations, just for our audiences! Technology offers so many avenues that we can tailor each one to the specific public we want to engage: seniors will listen to the recordings made at Cincinnati Music Hall on the spot, whereas students can enjoy them anytime through their Spotify accounts or on their Youtube. If you believe this is too good to be true, think again: on February 11th, a small group of artists from the CSO and the Cincinnati Opera recorded the first small program we will debut in March at OLLI. The selection includes a versatile repertoire: two joyous pieces by Debussy (Syrinx and Prélude à l’apres-midi d’un faune) and a haunting aria by Purcell (“When I am laid in Earth”), a perfect match to conclude our talk on Aspasia and evoke her tormented life in Classical Athens.
This is only the beginning: Stay tuned!

Valia Tsikritea holds an artifact in the field

Valia Tsikritea, a Ph.D. candidate in the UC Department of Classics, has received the Archaeological Institute of America’s Harriet and Leon Pomerance Fellowship for the AY 2021-2022. The award supports her dissertation project, entitled "An Archaeology of Cult at Juktas, Crete: Early Iron Age Pottery and Figurines from the 'Tomb of Zeus,'" which is a study of the peak sanctuary on Mt. Juktas in the 12th-7th centuries BCE. Juktas, identified with the mythical locality of the burial place of Zeus in later tradition, was the peak sanctuary of the palace of Knossos in the Minoan period. While most scholarly interest has been directed to the Minoan period of the sanctuary, Tsikritea's dissertation examines changes in cult practices on the site across the Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age, revisiting questions on the character of Cretan religion in this period and situating developments at the sanctuary within their Cretan and Aegean sociopolitical context. The peak sanctuary of Juktas presents an ideal case study because, despite the decline of many peak sanctuaries in the period, it continued to be frequented without any interruption. She will investigate cult practices at the site through the study of  unpublished assemblages of pottery and ceramic figurines, found in systematic excavations conducted in the 1970s and 1980s. During the Fall semester, she will use the award to fund her stay at Heraklion, where she will examine artifacts held in the storerooms of the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion, as well as at the Stratigraphical Museum of the BSA Research Center at Knossos.

Tsikritea is the fourth UC Classics graduate student in the last years to win this award.

UC Classics logo
The Department of Classics is now accepting applications for Semple Scholarships and its new Centennial Scholarships for the upcoming 2021-2022 academic year. 
For more details on these two undergraduate scholarship opportunities, please see the departmental scholarship page.
The application process is fully electronic this year. Use our online form.
The deadline for both scholarship applications is Feb 1, 2021.

Given the impact the global pandemic has had on our Tytus Fellowship program for the present academic year, we regret that we will be unable to accept applications to the program for the forthcoming academic year of 2021-22.  This allows us to honor the current Tytus Fellowship holders, who could not join us at this time, by offering them deferrals to the next academic year. 

Steven Ellis
Director, Margo Tytus Visiting Scholars Program

Barbara Burrell holds a kylix while teaching

Dr. Barbara Burrell is offering an intimate look at artifacts of Ancient Greece through her in-person and online hybrid course. The archaeologist hosts students in a classroom only one day a week to have hands-on experience with UC's precious artifacts. The COVID-19 pandemic initially put a damper on in-person classes at UC. However, Dr. Burrell redesigned her archaeology course with the assistance of an Instructional Innovation Advisory Council award from the College of Arts and Sciences.

Access to such archaeological artifacts is unprecedented even without a global pandemic.

“Ordinarily, you’d have to volunteer at a museum to handle these artifacts. It’s a rare opportunity,” Dr. Burrell said. UC students are among very few who get to experience history so intimately.