Kendy Altizer graduated from the University of Texas in Arlington with a double degree, Bachelor of Arts in History and Anthropology. After graduating from college, she spent a number of years in Cultural Resource Management, and worked her way up the ladder in a variety of capacities in a number of different states. She eventually began spending more and more time in the office writing reports and learning the business side of Cultural Resource Management. While she enjoyed the consulting aspect of archaeology, she wanted a different challenge than what CRM could offer with the level of education she had attained so, she decided to go back to school. Instead of pursuing a traditional graduate degree in Anthropology Kendy opted for the Master of Science in Historic Preservation Program offered by Clemson University and the College of Charleston. She really wanted a different perspective on artifacts and wanted to explore conservation of the built environment.
A thesis project was required as part of her graduate program and Kendy was afforded the opportunity to study Peachtree Plantation on the South Santee River. Using archaeology, history, and architectural precedents to understand the ruin of the main house and present a ground level floor plan and possible room uses. Kendy also presented a preservation plan for the ruin, which has since been implemented by the property owner. While working on her thesis, she knew there was much more to study and think about at Peachtree and that body of work would really just start the conversation of the broader plantation landscape. Kendy felt that that she could continue to make a contribution to Lowcountry scholarship, she decided to continue her education at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Kendy is currently in my second year as a PhD student in the Anthropology Department, her focus is historical archaeology and she is continuing to work at Peachtree with a broadened focus on the plantation landscape and colonial era enslaved lifeways. The time she spent at MSHP and CofC was invaluable and enabled me to choose a more academic career path, which is something I never thought I would do.
Best of luck Kendy as you pursue your Doctoral degree!