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Indiana Jones In Training

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Indiana Jones In Training

Indiana Jones In Training

Digging deeper has always appealed to B.J. Fink, a GC senior set to graduate this May. Though the American history he learned in grade school captured his interest, it was the ancient history he discovered on his own that fully engaged his thoughts and imagination. "By junior high, I could tell you the names of Greek kings, Egyptian dynasties, and Japanese shoguns," he recalls. By high school he conversed easily about events that predated the rise of Rome. By the time he arrived on GC's campus as a freshman, he had explored ancient sites in Israel and found inspiration to formally study archeology.

 "I found my way wandering through two-thousand-year-old tunnels," he recalls of his first trip to Israel, "I climbed and crawled through everything. It was like a playground for big kids. That was probably the point where I really knew I wanted to do this for a living."

Conversations with the dean for the Jerusalem Center for Biblical Studies led to B.J.'s participation in two excavations at one of Jordan's premier dig sites, including the proposed site for the Biblical city of Sodom. For two Interterms he worked under the leadership of Professor Steven Collins from Trinity Southwest University. His first job was to dig a waist-deep, three-foot-wide trench along the 4000-year-old temple foundation. In time, he helped excavate a house, a plaza, and part of the temple. He also personally discovered two human skeletons.

Greenville College does not offer an archeology major, but creative thinking from a supportive team of professors inspired by B.J.'s passions has helped him toward his goal for graduate study in archeology. They researched leads on current digs, networked with their own acquaintances in the field, directed his readings and guided his work on a senior thesis about the history of the dig site where he worked. "The profs have been super supportive of my efforts," B.J. reflects, a discovery that other GC grads have made over the years. "Who knows, maybe GC could start an archaeology program?"

And maybe, the expert to dig into that project will be B.J. Fink, Class of 2012, GC's unabashed lover of ancient history and self-proclaimed "Indiana Jones in training."

 

This story was published on April 05, 2012




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