A conference first – by Natasha Cross

My first academic conference experience as an Undergraduate student- By Natasha Cross

My name is Natasha Cross and I am in my final year at Bournemouth University, studying BSc (Hons) Archaeology. I was awarded an AEA conference grant to present a poster of my dissertation research, undertaking the first archaeobotanical analysis on samples from the Early Bronze Age settlement site of Caolas an Eilean in Coll, Inner Hebrides.

I was initially very nervous as it was my first academic conference, however I had no need to be! The atmosphere was so relaxed and friendly, with everyone making me feel incredibly welcome and at ease.  To start the day, we were treated to a variety of presentations before the faster paced, ignite sessions later that afternoon. It was fascinating listening to current research, discovering how we, as environmental archaeologists can visualise and improve the presentation of our data. Presenting my poster was enjoyable and was a lot more relaxed than I was expecting! I had fun sharing my dissertation research with others interested in archaeobotany and environmental archaeology. It was also an excellent day to network with other academics and professionals within the field.

Overall, I enjoyed the whole conference. I loved the variety of presentations throughout the day, particularly the faster paced ignite sessions! I highly recommend any undergraduate students with an interest in environmental archaeology to attend as it is so worthwhile. I am so happy to have received the grant, as it made it possible for me to attend and present my research! I would love to attend the next conference as I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience and was made to feel so welcome.