Project #3 — Back to School

About 2 weeks ago now, we ended our nomadic days of vagabonding and began our third and final project—Project #3.

First, a bit of background.

We took our first international trip to explore historical and archaeological Greece and Italy in March of 2011, and we never really came home. We began realizing there was something better just within our reach, and we started considering the logistics of returning to school for our Master’s degrees. Something along the lines of an MA in History was sounding intriguing. Studying artifacts from the Bible Lands was also evolving from a mere hobby into a passion.

The Colosseum on a Cool Night in 2011

The Colosseum on a Cool Night in 2011

And then, we visited Israel for the first time.

We joined Ferrell Jenkins on one of his really excellent tours through Israel in September of 2012. We were dazzled by the amount of archaeological work going on in the land. From Israel, we continued on in our travels, but something began growing. Upon our return home, we attended some of Ferrell’s lectures at a nearby Church and asked him for advice concerning schools and degree programs for Biblical archaeology.

Trent and Rebekah at Jericho being Nerds

Trent and Rebekah at Jericho being Nerds

Within a couple of months, we had applied at our top choice college. Two months later, I called Trent at work and told him to check his email. Waiting in both our inboxes were notes that we would be receiving an acceptance package in the mail. We tried to make a show of deciding whether this was really the right decision or not, but it was sort of a farce. Victory dances ensued.

Within 1½ months, Project #1 was underway, finding us up to our elbows in glorious, glorious old dirt at Ashkelon. For 6 fantastic weeks, we participated in our MA program’s Summer Field Study. Then, Project #2 began as we explored the country of Israel for 5 weeks, until time for Project #3 to begin.

Trent & Rebekah at Ashkelon

Celebrating a Successful Dig

On August 30, we moved onto campus at Mt. Zion to begin our Fall semester abroad. The college has a strong historical geography department, and has been the employer of great names like Rasmussen, Rainey, and Barkay. Sort of the Hollywood of Biblical archaeology. Now, we’re neck deep in ancient languages, history, geography, and archaeology. We couldn’t be happier.

Project #3 will continue even after we return home, when we will move ourselves, our library, and our cat to Chicago to finish the next 2 years of our Master’s program.


Books and cats. One must have their priorities, after all.

We would be remiss in not noting this has been a great blessing, and we are deeply thankful for it. We hope you’ll stay with us as we begin our foray into Biblical archaeology.

8 Responses to “Project #3 — Back to School”

  1. Mike Coward Says:

    Awesome! Thanks so much for sharing. Excited for you. The blessing you will both be to so many in the years to come in your teaching and sharing with others. You both are so special to me, as is your dad and mom and grand parents (both sets). Mike and Peg

  2. vanbraman Says:

    Good luck with Project #3. Especially the Ancient Languages part of it. The other classes sound like a lot of fun.

  3. Tom Roberts Says:

    Thanks so much for sharing your adventures with us. It has been fun looking over your shoulders. It is a blessing to enjoy the work one is doing and you seem to be doubly blessed. I hope to see articles by you both in BAR one of these days. Tom

  4. lukechandler Says:

    Have a great time in your ANE baptism. Not everyone gets to “live” in Jerusalem for any extended time. Look forward to hearing more and meeting up again down the road!

  5. stevewolfgang Says:

    Reblogged this on ἐκλεκτικός and commented:
    “Catching Up” with Trent and Rebekah — and looking forward to having them in Chicago!

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