Cultural Resources Program Manager
(Note: Responses have been lightly edited for clarity and style)
What is your current job field?
What degree(s) do you have and in what discipline(s)?
I have a Bachelor of Science in Anthropology with a minor in Archaeology. I also have an MA in Anthropology and another MA in History.
What is your current salary or salary range?
What can someone with a BA/MA/PhD expect to earn in this job?
My job and GS level require a minimum of a Master’s degree to meet the professional standards set forth by the Secretary of Interior.
What type of benefits are typically provided in your job field?
A federal job comes with health insurance, a Thrift Savings Plan that basically functions like a 401(k), and a pension upon retirement. You also get annual and sick leave. You can also be eligible for compensatory time when travel takes you past a standard working day’s hours.
What does a typical workday look like for you?
I spend my day reviewing project plans, attending meetings, reviewing 106 consultation packages, and ensuring my federal installation complies with the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), Army Regulation 200-1, and various other laws and regulations.
What do you like the most about your job?
I like building good working relationships with people who were otherwise averse to dealing with historic properties. It’s great to go from working with someone who has tried to bypass the process to then see them become engaged and proactive. Once people understand compliance with the NHPA is a process and not a hindrance my job becomes much easier.
What do you like the least about your job?
I don’t like it when someone Googles the 106 process and tries to tell me how to do my job or says “that building doesn’t look historic to me”.
How has your anthropology degree(s) influenced your present career?
My degree has taken me on a winding career path, and I have ended up in a completely different place than expected. As an archaeologist, I was afforded the opportunity to have amazing field experiences throughout the Southeast United States as well as Alaska and Nevis, West Indies.
Although I initially wanted to work in academia, I found myself in government work. Government work has provided job security and several life lessons. It has also afforded the opportunity to deploy as a civilian to the Middle East for six months alongside military members from around the world. I never thought I would be doing that kind of work with an Anthropology degree!