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Young woman buried in her work

FASCINATION: Following her University of Queensland graduation today, Modanville’s Johanna Qualmann will jet off to archaeological digs in Turkey and Italy.
FASCINATION: Following her University of Queensland graduation today, Modanville’s Johanna Qualmann will jet off to archaeological digs in Turkey and Italy. Lyle Radford

MEET Modanville's own Indiana Jones.

Just hours after Johanna Qualmann graduates from a Bachelor of Arts in ancient history and a Diploma in Languages at the University of Queensland today, she'll jump on a jumbo jet to take part in archaeological digs in Turkey and Italy.

For the next month she'll spend her time at Turkey's Boncuklu Höyük site and then after that, it's off to Rome, Naples and the Pollena Trocchia dig site run by the Apolline Project.

"I'll be excavating some Roman baths located inside a larger villa complex - a completely different culture and time period to Boncuklu," Ms Qualmann said.

Between digs she'll visit some of the ancient cities on Turkey's west coast, including Ephesus and Troy.

"I'm really looking forward to taking everything I've learned in my archaeology courses, especially the one I did in Turkish archaeology, and applying it myself," she said.

"It's such a terrific opportunity to immerse myself in the artefacts and materials and seeing how everything fits together - or doesn't.

"It fascinates me how you get from something seemingly insignificant like a figurine, shred of pottery or some charred grain to an idea about what life was like in the past."

Ms Qualmann, who was awarded valedictorian, said she caught the travel bug

after a study tour to Italy last year

"My main interests are in Roman history and archaeology, so being able to walk around a corner in Rome and see the Colosseum or the Pantheon or Trajan's column was amazing," she said.

During her three-and-a-half years at the university, Ms Qualmann was a student mentor and ambassador,

volunteer at the RD Milns Antiquities Museum and archaeology labs, UQ Women's Collective treasurer and president and secretary of the Classics and Ancient History Student Society.

She was also a summer research scholar and won an undergraduate research oral presentation award.

Despite her exciting adventures ahead, Ms Qualmann plans to return to the university next year to study an Honours and then a Master of Philosophy in Classics.

Topics:  archaeology



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