Welcome! Anthropology is that "unicorn" discipline that combines history, philosophy and a rigorous scientific character to reach fascinating new discoveries about our species. This, coupled with a predisposed fascination with the science fiction genre, led me into the area of technology studies that explores experience, aesthetics, and the creation of new social worlds through infrastructures. Enjoy!
THE PRINCIPLE BEHIND THE ETHIC
Artist and Scholar
Aaron is devoted to the pursuit, accumulation, and dispersal of knowledge. He believes that the more we know and understand about ourselves and the universe we live in, and the more we share that knowledge across the species, the more stable, prosperous, and happy our societies will be. This is balanced by the prospect that the knowledge we gain is for the use of everyone, and no group or individual should ever be wronged to obtain that knowledge.
This is a deep-seeded trait within Aaron. Growing up in Tyler, Texas, Aaron was homeschooled by his mother, and can remember always going to the bookstore with his father and exploring the history section with him. On Aaron's 12th birthday his father gave him one of his sets of Will Durant’s The Story of Civilization. For nearly two years after that, he would prefer reading Durant to anything else. His love of video games was even contested, although he still played many video games. This curiosity and thirst for knowledge is what led Aaron to anthropology, and what continues to guide his ethical approach to pursuing it.
For more information on Aaron's research agenda, click "Personal Statement."
WHY ANTHROPOLOGY MATTERS
Essentially, anthropology is the holistic study of humans. Holism being the key word here, anthropology seeks to answer questions and solve problems about the human experience, past, present and in some ways future, using the knowledge and techniques from various disciplines and professions. While the anthropologist would usually refrain from using such generalities, an applied anthropologist understands that all social issues are also cultural issues, and that culture, that universal human trait, can be studied to solve these issues.
Anthropology has made Aaron a people-oriented problem solver and a qualitative and holistic thinker, allowing him to approach issues from multiple perspectives. Aside from its ability to enlighten, Anthropology has direct application to the workplace. It gives you a cultural competency when you have a global awareness of the people around you. In addition, anthropology has given me an acute attention to detail, and a strict adherence to scientific standards of conduct.
August 2015-May 2019
SOUTHERN METHODIST UNIVERSITY
Earned a Bachelor of Fine Art in Dance Performance from the Meadows School of the Arts, and a Bachelor of Art in Anthropology with Departmental Distinction in the Dedmen School of Humanities and Sciences. I received the Outstanding Senior Student award for anthropology and the Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance.
Coursework included introductory work in all four fields of anthropology, regional survey courses of the Pacific, North America, and Africa, ethnographic and sociological research methods, and a rigorous curriculum of writing.
Both Transcript and List of References available upon request. Click below for contact.
August 2013-May 2015
BISHOP THOMAS K GORMAN REGIONAL CATHOLIC SCHOOL
Received a high school diploma in the top 10% his class. Was elected Vice President of the Student Body and Chair of the Community Service Committee. Upon graduation, he received the Christus Award for community service and the continued display of academic integrity.
To view my academic work in Anthropology, click below.
MASDAR CITY A STUDY OF ENERGY, INFRASTRUCTURES, AND TECHNOLOGICAL HOPE
A Case Study
United Arab Emirates has been a major supplier of fossil fuel for the world economy for decades, which has allowed the country to thrive both economically and socially. But global concerns over ecological destruction and climate change is prompting the UAE’s leaders to pursue alternative sources of energy to fossil fuels. From this ecological fear, Masdar City is born, an ambitious project that hopes to create the world’s first “zero-carbon” emission city. The project’s goal is to utilize energy in the most sustainable system thinkable without sacrificing economic growth. This case study will utilize theory on energy and infrastructures, and explore the rising intersection of neoliberalism and environmentalism to understand the ways Masdar’s ambitious plans and innovations could change the ways humans interact with the energy they consume and the environment they live
Background & Expertise
UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH ASSISTANT- SMU ARCHAEOLOGY RESEARCH COLLECTIONS
Organized SMU’s James Collins Collection of artifacts into an accessible and malleable database, allowing for easier editing and review of artifact information
Created an Excel database that housed over 400 artifacts for the use of the Anthropology Department
Catalogued the data using observable class traits and contextual information, making the data comprehendible; collaborated with faculty and graduate students to link all catalogued information to the online database
Choreographed a ten-minute dance piece as my Senior Capstone Project at Meadows School of the Arts
Collaborated with a creative writer and a group of voice actors to craft a recorded monologue that will coincide with the dancing
Submitted a grant proposal for $500 to support production and promotion costs, and costuming.
Managed work with lighting designers to create suitable production ambience
Taught a Modern Dance class of 12 students, exposing them to new perspectives on movement which honed the students’ ability to adapt to various styles of dance technique
Articulated specific mechanical attributes of the technique, instructing correct usage of muscle groups in achieving maximum efficiency in movement
Guided exploration into the artistic aspects of the technique, facilitating the discussion of various aspects of imagery, emotion, perspective, and intent
Student Researcher for Departmental Distinction
Wrote a 50-page case study on an infrastructural project in the United Arab Emirates that examined the underlying political and social functions that accompany large-scale technological initiatives
Compiled over 60 sources for literacy analysis and over 20 sources from government and think tank sources for direct reference
The final paper received the award of Departmental Distinction in Anthropology
MY KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES
A COLLABORATIVE LEADER
Teamwork is Key
What is a collaborative leader? This trait is primarily derived from 11 years of rigorous training in dance performance. If dance has taught me anything, it has been how to work within the system to make the system shine. From performing in grand ensembles to composing dances in a team, the performing arts require collaboration. I have an acute ability to step up and be the innovative leader when I need to be, or step down and take direction with absolute accuracy. While this transitionary skill is helpful in teamwork, being a collaborative leader is about maintaining that position as director or manager, but fostering a community of openness to creativity and innovation from the various experts on your team. This trait is exemplified in both my performance and production experience in the "Senior Dance Concert," as well as in the extensive laboratory work in the anthropology department.
Academic Writing and Grant Writing
Academically, I have written a plethora of essays and reports including a 50-page case study for departmental distinction in anthropology at Southern Methodist University. When directing my senior choreographic piece for dance, I submitted a grant proposal and was awarded $350 to assist in the creation of my piece. Throughout this process, each student received extensive coaching on writing for grants.
Literary Research and Research in the Field
I have knowledge of ethnographic field methods and comparative analysis, and have conducted surveys and interviews in the context of coursework before. I am proficient in the online literary management software "Mendeley" and have written many in-depth research essays using a variety of sources and types of data.
MICROSOFT OFFICE SUITE
Word, Powerpoint, Excel
Throughout my college career, I have used the word and powerpoint applications of office in nearly every course to create presentations and write essays. I have used Excel to record both qualitative and quantitative data in coursework, and manage budgets as financial coordinator for some dance events and concerts.
Contact me directly to learn more specifics about my skill set.
"Man is an animal suspended in webs of significance he himself has spun."