Spencer Lambert

Ph.D., Anthropology


Hampton, New Hampshire / St. George, Utah

What is your research area?

I am an archaeologist currently studying Hawaiian archaeology. For my dissertation, I plan on exploring how tribute and taxation were organized in prehistoric Hawaii, and how animal commodities were used by Hawaiian elites. My other research interests are zooarchaeology, isotope studies, Southwest Archaeology, Great Basin Archaeology, and museum studies.

What is something cool about your field?

It is interesting to learn about different peoples and cultures and how they lived and interacted in the past. Using the scientific to method to investigate hypotheses about past peoples is very exciting.

What is the best thing you’ve done as a graduate student at SMU so far?

The best thing I’ve done as a graduate student at SMU is gain archaeological experience in Hawaii during the summer months. I analyzed fish bones from archaeological sites from Hawai‘i Island, obtained practical experience working at a private archaeology company on O‘ahu Island, and assisted with an archaeological survey on the Kohala coast of Hawai‘i Island.

What is your favorite thing to do in Dallas?

I love the food. Barbeque and fried chicken are my favorite foods to eat.

What do you wish you’d known before starting graduate school?

I learned that while it is easy to just go through the motion of classes and exams, graduate is so much more. Other useful experiences include presenting research at professional conferences, networking with future employers and fellow researchers, and publishing papers.

What is your favorite leisure activity?

I enjoy reading comic books, playing computer games, and spending time with my wife and son.