Lindsay Eaves monitoring an Artec 3D white light scan of the bones in the fossil hominin chamber in the Rising Star Cave. Photo by Elen Feuerriegel.
**Lindsay Eaves was one of six scientists that made up the Advance Science Team on the Rising Star Expedition. Read more here**
For Lindsay Eaves, being a part of the Rising Star Expedition means that she gets to combine her dual passions for paleoanthropology and science outreach. She fits right into our trowelblazer network, too: she’s co-authored a paper on the Kebara 2 Neanderthal, a specimen that hails from the eponymous site excavated by Dorothy Garrod in the 1930s (though “Moshe”, as this specimen is nicknamed, was discovered during excavations led by Ofer Bar-Yosef in the 1980s).
As a Ph.D. student at the University of Iowa, she worked with a number of other well-known fossil hominin collections – from specimens of Australopithecus excavated at the South African site of Sterkfontein to Anatomically Modern Humans from sites in Europe and South America. Much of her doctoral research has centered on the evolution, shape, and function of the thorax or ‘trunk’ of the skeleton in our genus, Homo, and has been funded by the National Science Foundation and Wenner-Gren.
Lindsay has also been active in freelance writing and copy editing and is particularly interested in using writing to reach out to younger audiences. Students of physical anthropology will likely have read her chapter on fossil primates in Jurmain et al.’s standard introductory textbook on the subject. In addition, she recently worked on creating a forensics module for high school teachers in order to introduce students to anthropology before they get to university – usually their first encounter with the discipline. She advocates that even younger students need to be exposed to paleoanthropology and human evolution in order for it to become a normal component of their science learning and to help counteract exposure to creationism, a major issue in her current state of Texas.
Ultimately, Lindsay says she hopes to continue her career in paleoanthropology, perhaps working at other sites in the “Cradle” and staying involved with the Rising Star team while also keeping active in writing and outreach. Watch this space!
You can follow Lindsay Eaves on twitter: @Paleo_Bonegirl
Written by Suzie (@suzie_birch)