Second UB Classics Student Receives Prestigious Rome Prize

Release Date: April 15, 2008

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- For the second year in a row, a doctoral student in the University at Buffalo Department of Classics has received a rare pre-doctoral Rome Prize to fund research in ancient studies at the American Academy in Rome.

Every year the academy presents fewer than 10 of its very prestigious fellowships in ancient studies, and for a university outside of the Ivy League or Big Ten to receive two in as many years is extremely rare.

That makes the two awards a distinct honor for UB and for archaeologist Stephen L. Dyson, Ph.D., UB Distinguished Professor and Park Professor of Classics in the UB College of Arts and Sciences, under whom both students are conducting their graduate research.

Matthew Notarian of Northport, N.Y., who holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Delaware, learned recently that he had been awarded the 2008-09 Arthur Ross Pre-Doctoral Rome Prize, one of only six prizes in ancient studies awarded by the academy this year.

Rachel van Dusen of Williamsville, N.Y., another doctoral student in the department, was the recipient of the 2007-08 Jesse Benedict Carter/Samuel H. Kress Foundation Pre-Doctoral Rome Prize fellowship from the academy, one of only six awarded in the field last year as well. She is a graduate of Buffalo State College.

Awardees are provided with a stipend, a study or studio, and room and board in Rome for a period of six months to two years.

Notarian, who will take up residence at the academy in September, received the award for his project, "Civic Transformation in Early Imperial Latium: An Archaeological and Social History of Praeneste, Tibur and Tusculum," an archaeological study of town life in the region directly outside of Rome during the early Roman Empire.

Van Dusen, who returned from Rome recently, worked at the academy and the University of Barcelona on her project, "Central Apennines: A History of Cultural Change in the Highlands of Central Italy," which will contribute to her doctoral dissertation about cultural change in the Central Apennines of Italy between the eighth and first centuries B.C.  Among the changes she is researching are the funerary practices, social organization, trade relationships and economic situation of the people living in this area.

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