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Petition to Meet with Governor Rick Scott

Recently, Governor Rick Scott of Florida was quoted in the Herald Tribune as saying that he wanted to devote state funding resources to encourage students to graduate with degrees in science, technology, engineering and medical degrees, noting “the state doesn’t need any more anthropologists.”

We ask that you join this petition to have Gov. Scott meet with representatives from the humanities community so that he can be educated as to our collective contribution to the scientific advancement, economy, and well-being of his state. We will be collecting signatures for the next two weeks, and plan to submit our request on Monday, October 31.

Thank you for joining this petition, and helping us underscore the value of humanities-related research and study not only in Florida, but nationwide.

To “sign” the petition,below, add your name to the reply box below along with any constructive comments you have for the Governor.

October 31, 2011

Rick Scott
Governor
State of Florida
The Capitol
400 S. Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0001

Dear Governor Scott:

We, the undersigned members of the humanities and social science community, request that you meet with our Florida-based representatives, members and students to discuss our contributions to the scientific advancement, economy, and well-being of Florida.  The President and the Executive Director of the American Anthropological Association (AAA) wrote to you on October 11, 2011 and asked for a meeting. We ask that you give our representatives an opportunity to respond to your statement that the state of Florida “does not need more anthropology majors.” While your statement engages anthropologists directly, it also has immediate implications for the entire network of professionals (both established and in-training) in the humanities and social sciences.

We are scholars, scientists, educators, researchers, students, museum curators, government employees and professionals who make many valued contributions in Florida and nationwide. Anthropologists are dedicated to studying humankind in all its aspects, including through archaeological, biological, cultural, medical and linguistic research. Together with our colleagues from social sciences (including sociology, political science, criminology, international relations, among many others) and the humanities (such as modern languages, history, religion, art, among many others),  our impact on the state is strong.

For example, as the Florida Public Archaeology Network documents, sustainable heritage tourism and historic preservation in Florida contributes over $4 billion per year to Florida’s economy. We look forward to your meeting with our representatives, and will follow up on this request in a few short days. Please feel free to contact Damon Dozier, Director of Public Affairs at the AAA if you have any questions, comments or concerns.

Best,

119 Responses

  1. David B. Halmo, PhD Anthropologist

  2. Rick Rossi, University of Rhode Island

  3. Marcel Zikofsky

  4. Rick Rossi, University of Rhode Island.

  5. Erin McGinley

  6. Dr. Laura Popova

  7. I am a student of Anthropology, and I am currently studying in Alabama. I had plans to transfer to Florida, but I am reconsidering my decision.
    Anthropology is the holistic study of human kind. It’s scope shows us where we came from and hopefully where we’re going. Please take a look at all of the important work that anthropologist do before directing funds elsewhere.

    - Robert A. Giles
    Student of Anthropology

  8. [excerpt from a letter written to Governor Scott for class] As an Anthropology student I am writing this to inform you of the importance of our field. The world is run on the social sciences and you can find us in anything from Political science, forensic science, economists, archaeology, linguistics, and much more. Unlike politicians we are here to help promote understanding, not just to make money.
    Anthropology is one of the most holistic disciplines in the world. Without us your foreign policies wouldn’t exist. As said by you “The big losers: Programs like psychology and anthropology…” the ones that are not “vital interests to the state” are the ones that make the balance and understanding of people today possible. Anthropologists work as mediators between different cultures, without them the international relationships and understanding we have would be little to nothing. High business men have to be trained by anthropologists on how to behave when they go to meetings in other countries. Without that training the business men you send in hope to acquire some sort of out of the nation support could insult them and ruin your entire company by accident. The ways that people across the world live doesn’t just come naturally to a visitor. It is very ethnocentrically biased of you to think that looking into diplomatic workings in other countries, and working to understand them so that we can all better communicate, is not important.

  9. Dr. Erica L. Williams
    Assistant Professor of Anthropology
    Spelman College

  10. Elizabeth McManus, PhD
    Research Professor, University of Virginia

  11. Tom Hehir

  12. Gwendolyn Robbins Schug, PhD
    Assistant Professor of Anthropology
    Appalachian State University

  13. Acquanda Y. Stanford

  14. Victoria A. Ingalls
    M.A. Candidate
    Department of Anthropology
    University of Central Florida

  15. Russell Edwards
    Graduate Student of Anthropology
    University of Central Florida

  16. Jason Wenzel, M.A.
    Anthropology Ph.D. student
    University of Florida

    Adjunct Professor
    Valencia College
    Brevard Community College

    Field/Lab Director & Chapter Representative
    Central Florida Anthropological Society

  17. Kathryn Bonnet,
    Texas State University, BS Anthropology

  18. Madison Huber-Smith, MA
    Adjunct Professor of Anthropology
    Johnson County Community College

    I teach students every day how to understand and work with different groups of people. These students may be engineers, doctors, scientists, or many other professions, and because of anthropology, they’ll be able to successfully work with people who are different from themselves.

  19. I urge you to reconsider your statement. Given our increasingly complex and interconnect world and the vast array of seemingly insurmountable problems we face,all approaches to making sense of the world should be embraced and encouraged.

  20. David Bayendor
    Graduate Student, Dept of Anthropology
    University of Colorado Denver

  21. Chanda Briggs

    I am graduating senior from UCLA’s anthropology department and someone who grew up and still has family and friends in Florida. The importance of social sciences to the business and population of Florida is something I don’t believe should be taken lightly. In a state that has seen incredible shifts in demographics for decades, is home to international and seasonal inhabitants, attracts domestic and international businesses and is in close proximity to island nations, what could be more informative to policy than sound, thorough research? This is not to mention the historical wealth of Florida’s coasts and keys. It would be a shame if valuable data and arfifacts were overlooked due to a shortage of social science investment in such a beautiful state rich in its culture, history, people and potential.

  22. Charlotte Noble, MA/MPH
    Doctoral Student, Department of Anthropology
    University of South Florida

  23. Marc Settembrino, University of Central Florida, Sociologist

  24. Ronald Kephart, PhD
    Associate Professor of Anthropology
    University of North Florida

  25. Indeed!

    Angela VandenBroek
    M.A. Anthropology

    Gov. Rick Scott — I am an anthropologist and I use my anthropology to create intuitive and culturally meaningful websites in my position as webmaster of a community college and as a freelance designer. My anthropology is the T in STEM.

  26. Rachael Tackett
    Undergraduate Student in Anthropology
    University of South Florida

    Anthropology needs to connect with STEM fields. We need to make Anthropology relevant to undergraduate students and give them job skills. Anthropology students need applied courses in STEM fields and people in STEM fields need some people stills i.e. applied Anthropology.

  27. Gomathi Ganesan

  28. Joshua Mullenite
    Undergraduate Anthropology Major at Florida International University

  29. Daniel Lende, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor
    Department of Anthropology
    University of South Florida

  30. Melissa Cefkin, PhD
    Research Scientist
    IBM Research – Almaden

  31. Gabrielle Purcell
    Graduate Student
    University of Tennessee
    B.A. from University of West Florida

  32. Brian Mabelitini

  33. Carylanna Taylor, MS
    Doctoral Candidate in Applied Anthropology
    University of South Florida

  34. John Colgrove, Student
    CSU, San Bernardino

  35. Gabriela Maldonado.

  36. The fact that Governor Scott has made such comments attacking Anthropology as an area of study that does not need to be focused on or funded anymore just goes to show how ill-informed some people are when it comes to this specific discipline. It is up to us as students, teachers, and workers to educate Governor Scott and the rest of Americans about what Anthropology is and how it can be used or applied in the real world.

    Kristel Crame
    University of South Florida
    Anthropology Undergraduate

  37. Daniel Laracuente
    Anthropology major at USF St.Petersburg campus.
    Was an anthropology major at FSU until I was told I needed choose another major,that is why I came to USF
    Governor Scott, I ask that you strongly reconsider the issue at hand.

  38. Kathleen Gillogly
    Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin-Parkside

  39. Joe Feldman
    Ph.D. Student
    Department of Anthropology
    University of Florida

  40. Amy Eve
    History Graduate Student, University of West Florida

    The liberal arts are the foundation upon which this country was built. How can we avoid making the same mistakes over and over again without learning about the mistakes of the past and the cultures and societies in which we exist.

  41. Nelma Spradling-Bell

  42. Erica M Ruyle
    Wayne State University
    PhD Candidate & Senior Methodologist, New Method and Social Research – Market Strategies International; Portland, OR

  43. Edward J Rohn
    Wayne State University
    PhD Candidate
    Independent Contractor & Medical Anthropologist

  44. Rebecca Sparks
    Graduate Student, Anthropology
    California State University; Sacramento

  45. Kurtis Neu
    Anthropology Student, Undergraduate
    St. Cloud State University, Minnesota

  46. Lauren Cheek, MA
    current Ph.D student at University of Florida

  47. Lee Bloch
    AmeriCorps*VISTA
    Office of Civic and Community Engagement
    University of Miami

    After graduating with a B.A. in anthropology and gender studies, I now work to identify and promote civic and community engagement. My office develops partnerships with local organizations to address community needs, applying academic pursuits to the enrichment of community and civic life in South Florida. Some of our most active faculty making significant contributions in Miami are in the humanities and social sciences. In part because my own education prepared me to better understand and articulate the nature of society as well as to to work with diverse peoples, it is clear to me that the humanities and social sciences have an invaluable impact on civic life and society in Florida.

  48. USF undergraduate

  49. Dr. Alexander D. King, Senior Lecturer of Anthropology at University of Aberdeen (Ph.D., Virginia)

  50. Alisse Waterston
    Professor, Department of Anthropology
    John Jay College, CUNY

  51. Jason Baird Jackson
    Associate Professor of Folklore and American Studies
    Adjunct Associate Professor of Anthropology
    Fourth Generation Floridian and University of Florida Graduate
    Son of Two Elderly, Angry Florida Voters

  52. Masood Khan

    Majoring in Anthropology
    Pakistan

  53. S. J. Forney
    Adjunct, Anthropology
    And Archaeology
    SCF

  54. Jodi Skipper
    Anthropology
    Oxford, MS

  55. Jane Henrici, PhD
    Study Director
    Institute for Women’s Policy Research
    Washington, DC

  56. Vicki Ina F. Gloer
    Graduate Student
    SUNY-Albany

  57. Hugh Gusterson
    Professor, Anthropology
    George Mason University
    Fairfax, VA

  58. Elizabeth Wirtz
    PhD Student
    Department of Anthropology
    Purdue University

  59. Anthropology is a critical discipline in today’s world. It is critical in at least two ways: it creates and disseminates tools to analyze the human condition, but it also creates and disseminates tools to identify and solve human problems.

  60. Julien Cossette

  61. Anthropology, other social sciences and humanities are the foundation of our research institute which, for 25 years has been dedicated to using anthropological knowledge, supported with NIH and other federal and foundation dollars to work with local communities to understand and address critical issues in health, culture and well being. Anthropology’s orientation and research methods create capacity to understand how diverse peoples make sense of the world. This leads to the development of good prevention strategies, responsive and productive businesses, cultural tourism and workable responses to environmental and other crises. Florida’s anthropology programs train the students who endorse these goals that contribute to quality of life in the state and far beyond. They should be supported and endorsed, not reduced and eliminated.

  62. Nan Rothschild,
    Dept of Anthropology,
    Columbia University
    New York, NY

  63. Christine Pyles
    Undergraduate Anthropology student
    Cleveland State University

  64. Alex A. G. Taub
    Wenatchee Valley College
    Washington State

  65. CJ Brown
    Adjunct in Anthropology
    Hamilton Holt
    Rollins College
    Winter Park, FL

  66. Sarah Roellinger MA Anthropology

  67. Amy Goldmacher, Ph.D.
    Anthropologically-trained market researcher

  68. Alicia Guillama: MA Museum Studies, BA Anthropology

  69. Shed your ignorance Governor

  70. Sandy Whitehurst

  71. Karen Esche-Eiff
    Ph.D. Student
    Anthropology
    UW-Milwaukee

  72. Travis M. Williams
    Doctoral Student in Anthropology
    University of Michigan

  73. Eric Burant
    Recent Graduate
    Archaeology/Anthropology
    UW-Milwaukee

  74. Michael Thomas, Anthropology Major and President of the Saint Mary’s Anthropology Society 2011/2012.

  75. Please add my name to your petition.

  76. Mary L Fryman
    BA Anthropology University of TN Knoxville
    MA Anthropology University of Memphis
    Clinical Research Associate

  77. Precisely the reason we need a Public Anthropology.

  78. Susan D. Gillespie
    Dept of Anthropology
    University of Florida
    Gainesville, FL 32611-7305

  79. BA Anhtropolugy Penn State Univ 2010

    … and I have a job after graduating with a degree in Anthropology … imagine that!

  80. BA Anthropology Penn State Univ 2010

    … and I have a job after graduating with a degree in Anthropology … imagine that!

  81. Jessica Hahl
    BA Anthropology
    Fort Lewis College
    Durango, CO

  82. Anthropology is essential for multicultural education in the age of globalization.

    Mark Frezzo, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor
    Department of Sociology and Anthropology
    University of Mississippi

  83. Karen E. Danner
    Adjunct Anthropology Instructor
    Pierce College
    Lakewood, WA

  84. Matthew Morrow
    University of Florida Student
    Gainesville Florida

  85. Dusty Riley
    American Military University Student
    Virginia Beach, VA.

  86. Elise Adams, M.A.
    PhD Candidate
    Department of Anthropology
    Australian National University
    (Graduate of University of Central Florida, BA Anthropology, and long time Florida resident)

    I too have employment in my field.

  87. Hello, this is Gregory Brass. I have been involved in a variety of health and mental health related research projects. My current research project is on the social impacts of cancers among the Cree of James Bay in northern Quebec, Canada. Once complete I expect my research will be useful to other Indigenous populations and public health experts when addressing the recent rise of cancers in Native North American communities. Similarly, I am also involved in an international study investigating the factors that support individual and community resilience in Indigenous communities. My anthropological training in ethnographic research and qualitative methods has been critical to my ability to both collect useful data and effectively analyze it. I have worked with other academic researchers, health professionals, and others including family physicians, oncologists, psychiatrists, environmental scientists, public health experts, Indigenous healers, religious and civic leaders, and scores of community members.

    Gregory M. Brass
    Department of Anthropology, McGill University
    855 Sherbrooke St. Ouest, Montreal QC H3A 2T7

    Network for Aboriginal Mental Health Research (NAMHR)
    Culture & Mental Health Research Unit
    4333 Cote Ste Catherine Rd, Montreal H3T 1E4
    http://www.namhr.ca

  88. Is it safe to assume that next year’s AAA meeting will be somewhere in South Florida?

  89. Medical Anthropologist
    Yale University School of Medicine
    New Haven, Connecticut

  90. Emily Niespodziewanski, BA
    Graduate Student in Physical Anthropology
    Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

  91. Ryan W. Schmidt, PhD Candidate
    University of Montana, Missoula
    Department of Anthropology

  92. Sheila K Kessler, Northwestern University (’04)

  93. Ben Hutcherson, MA
    Adjunct Instructor
    University of MIssissippi
    Department of Sociology and Anthropology

  94. Kimberly A. Couvson-Liebe, Ph.D.
    Senior Researcher/Sociocultural Anthropologist
    Center for Development Research, University of Bonn, Germany

  95. Melody Slashinski, PhD
    Postdoctoral Fellow
    University of Texas School of Public Health

  96. Being that the research methods used in anthropology are useful in marketing it would be wise for the governor to reconsider his position. I use the skills I have obtained with my degree daily in my private sector work.

    Regards,

    Robert Pfeiffenberger
    Miami, FL
    Florida International University
    BA sociology/Anthropology

  97. Mary L. Russell

  98. A Muhammad Ma`ruf, Ph.D. Swedesboro, NJ

  99. Anthropology is important and should be supported.

  100. Ashley Sewell

    Anthropology undergraduate

    University of Florida

    As others have said, in an increasingly global world anthropologists are more important now then perhaps ever before. I urge the governer to reconsider his statement, and at least have the courtesy to meet with those who participate in representing our multi faceted and flexible field.

  101. Celia Grace Murnock, NJ

  102. Kathleen Terry-Sharp
    Memphis, TN

  103. Please continue to cherish Florida’s historical legacy and the people who help you to preserve and interpret your state’s fascinating culture history.

  104. Sandra Weinstein Bever, PhD., applied anthropologist and researcher
    Medical Advisory Board
    The Bonnie J Addario Lung Cancer Foundation

  105. Dr. Marcy Brink-Danan, Anthropology, Brown University

  106. Anna Jefferson
    PhD candidate, anthropology, Michigan State University
    Analyst, Abt Associates, Cambridge, MA

  107. Matthew Hayes
    M.A. Candidate, Anthropology, Simon Fraser University
    Vancouver, Canada

  108. Christopher A. Furlow
    President, General Anthropology Division of the American Anthropological Association
    Santa Fe College
    Gainesville, FL

  109. Governor Scott needs to hear directly from anthropologists. How can our State’s businesses and industries succeed in the Global markeplace without an understanding of world cultures.

    Dennis Wiedman, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor
    Department of Global and Sociocultural Studies
    Florida International University

    Past President of the National Association for the Practice of Anthropology
    Past AAA Executive Board Member, Practicing/Professional Seat

  110. If we stop and think of a single question to ponder about humanity, we realize all disciplinary roads–philosophy, history, even the hardest of the sciences–lead to the perspectives held in anthropology to answer that question. We and everything we know and do are our own creations, our own organization of experience. How can we come to understand this without anthropology?

  111. Ava Iuliano, MLIS
    International Relations Librarian
    Florida International University

    Gov. Scott would benefit greatly from having an anthropologist on his staff. Perhaps s/he would be able to point out that promoting education in STEM while criticizing the salaries of professors (the higher paid often being in the medical or hard sciences) is a bit inconsistent.

  112. Elana D. Buch MSW, PhD
    Assistant Professor
    Department of Anthropology
    University of Iowa
    &
    Social Science in Practice Postdoctoral Fellow
    Department of Anthropology
    UCLA

  113. Jessica Cattelino
    Associate Professor of Anthropology, UCLA
    Author of a Florida-based book, High Stakes: Florida Seminole Gaming and Sovereignty, and scholar bringing outside grant money to South Florida in 2011-12 for research on Everglades-related issues

  114. Ashley Jones
    Student and MUSIC major
    What should happen to my education Gov. Scott?

  115. Maleia Mikesell,
    and thanks so ever much for promising us in high school (2010 graduate) that if we made certain grades and met specified requirements that 75% of our state tuition and 300 in books per semester would be paid for on bright futures and then reneging on that promise. Lying to kids to get something out of them, one of your many slimy corrupt ways.

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