Monday, 5 March 2012

Career Case Study - Interview with Caroline Sloan

Where did you graduate and what are you doing now?
I graduated with BA(Hons) Archaeology from the University of Reading in 2005. 

When you graduated were you looking for a career in archaeology?
Initially I worked for the Special Events dept at Cliveden House Hotel (von Essen Hotels), Taplow.  I arranged weddings, private dinners, parties, exclusive use of the property for an assortment of people.  I was there when the Gerrard wedding took place - and had a small part to play in organising the wedding!  I thought working at Cliveden would enable me to look for jobs within the National Trust whether it was looking after collections or learning how to manage an old property.  I never intended to undertake fieldwork as I was always more interested in museums and collections.

However, I moved to New Zealand where I bought a 32 acre cattle farm.  I also worked for a law firm and began studying the legal executive course.  But after two years living in NZ I decided to move back to the UK.

I am now the office manager for a trade association in the HVACR industry and have started studying MA Archaeology at the University of Reading part time.

I am also a published author.  I started writing whilst living in NZ and used my background in archaeology to develop a story based on Brazilian mythology, Scythian warriors and an assortment of crazy happenings as you'd expect from a fantasy fiction novel!  The book is called Iara.

How has a degree in archaeology benefited your career?
Having a degree in archaeology has actually been beneficial in every aspect of my varied careers!  Archaeology isn't one subject - it's a discipline that encapsulates numerous subjects, theories and concepts.  With event and project management, the fieldwork aspect of archaeology comes into play.  How do you organise a dig - well, it's the same method as how you would organise an event.  There is a fair amount of research that has to be undertaken in an archaeology degree and this is the same when it comes to law.  I was learning about intellectual property as part of my legal executive course in NZ and had I not had the background in archaeology, where I knew how to research in detail, I would have struggled! 

Would you go back into Archaeology later down the line?
Archaeology is a passion.  I love learning about how we developed into the society we see before us.  The steps that we took from a nomadic hunter-gatherer lifestyle to a sedentary farming existence to the champions of technology in the 21st century.  I am studying archaeology at postgraduate level because I want to learn more.  Every archaeologist knows that the past is the key to our future, and I want to be prepared for a future of knowledge and understanding.  I will use my archaeology degrees in my future, but it will be for my career as an author.  I want to bring archaeology to the 'mainstream' and show them that not all archaeology involves a bulldozer and a time limit.  I want people to know that archaeology is a fascinating subject with a future.


  1. Great article!

  2. super article and so encouraging for any kind of further studies regardless of what field.