Join the team!

We accept applications for student excavators— undergraduate and graduate—from universities in the US and abroad.  No prior experience is necessary. We especially encourage applications from members of groups historically underrepresented in the field of Archaeology.

Applications for the 2024 excavation season are now closed.

Please check back in fall 2024. Unfortunately, late applications cannot be accepted.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are you looking for in excavators? 

We are looking for dedicated students who understand that the excavation is an active research project, which makes it different from many summer study abroad experiences. Our team has been entrusted with the responsibility of excavating the site correctly, recording it throughly, analyzing it carefully, and doing so within an extremely compressed amount of time. For this reason, our archaeological work always comes first. The project is ideal for those willing to accept that responsibility with enthusiasm and actively contribute as a members of the research team.

It should be noted that field archaeology can be stressful and VERY physically demanding. Summer in southern Italy is hot (regularly 90 degrees+), and we usually work in full sun. Excavation demands full-body strength, since pickaxes and shovels are used as often as paintbrushes and fine tools. You should be prepared to spend days in the heat, to carry 20 lb buckets and push 100 lb wheelbarrows, and to squat, kneel, or be on your feet for most of the day.

No prior excavation experience is required, but interested excavators should be prepared to take on the mental and physical demands of archaeological work.

How much will this cost? 

Accessibility is one of our chief concerns, and we work hard to keep costs as low as possible. We do not charge program fees and students do not fund the research. Excavators are responsible only for their own  room, board, and travel. Room and board work out to be about $1600 for the full season; travel varies, but typically adds another $1000– $1500 for those coming from the United States. 

We encourage all student excavators to seek funding via university and other grants, and can help with that process. 

What are the dates? 

The 2024 excavation season will be five weeks long. Excavators will arrive June 15 and we will have an on-site orientation June 16. We begin excavating June 17 and finish July 19. Excavators will depart on July 20. We can only accept excavators who will be present for the entire season. 

What is the daily schedule

We work Monday through Friday. We aim to arrive at work by about 8:15 and to have morning tasks underway by 8:30. We take a quick (10-15 min) break midmorning. Lunch is delivered to site around noon and we take a full hour to eat and rest (lunch is provided by the project). After another short afternoon break (10-15 min), we wrap up work around 4:30. Evenings and weekends are your own. 

What will I need? 

Italian law requires us to excavate in long pants and steel-toed boots. You will also need your own archaeological pointing trowel. Otherwise, your standard clothing and toiletries will be fine; we'll circulate a suggested packing list. 

Where do we stay?  

Our home for the season is the fantastic Agora Hostel Deluxe, located just off the central piazza of modern Pompei. The hostel is less than five minutes' walk from the site and within steps of excellent restaurants, coffee shops, and shopping. We also have easy access to grocery stores, pharmacies, and a laundromat. Rooms are shared bunk dormitories (4–6 roommates), each with a private bath and nighttime air-conditioning. There is wi-fi throughout the property. Our hosts—Lorena, Vincenzo, and Ciro the cat—are our Pompei family and truly make us feel at home.

What if I have dietary restrictions? 

Team members are responsible for their own breakfast and dinner, which allows for flexibility in adapting to dietary restrictions. The excavation site and hostel are located near multiple grocery stores that carry a wide range of products (e.g. vegan, gluten free, etc.) We advise that those who are vegan, etc. to bring their own supplements, particularly given the physical demands of the excavation.

What is life like there?  

Pompei is a wonderful place to spend the summer. The modern city is vibrant and well-connected. Trains are cheap (and we live five minutes' walk from two stations); for less than $5 you can be at the Amalfi Coast in a half hour, Naples in an hour, or the beach in 15 minutes. Our excavation passes give you access to the archaeological site of Pompeii for the entire summer, and we strongly suggest you spend time exploring it and the other sites around the Bay of Naples. While we work hard, we also believe in enjoying and fully appreciating all the unique experiences our work offers.