Current & Past Ph. D. Students

Austen Leigh (PhD Candidate) received a BA from Rutgers University in Art History & English Literature with a minor in Classical Humanities and an MA from the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU in Art History & Archaeology. She has participated in excavations in Selinunte, Sicily and Aphrodisias, Turkey and is also a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She taught Art History at Middlesex County College from 2012-2016 and has been enrolled in Art History PhD program with a CHAPS concentration at Rutgers since 2015. Her research explores the complex relationships between creation & destruction, in particular how material culture functions in the context of armed conflict. 


Joëlla van Donkersgoed (PhD Candidate) has a BA and MA in Archaeological Heritage Management from Leiden University (The Netherlands) and is currently enrolled as PhD student in Cultural Heritage and Preservation Studies at the Department of Art History at Rutgers University. She is currently working on a project to enlist the Banda Islands (Indonesia) on the UNESCO World Heritage List as a mixed site. The Banda Islands also form the case study for her dissertation research, in which she will explore the physical and intangible fabric that make up this unique cultural landscape.


Todd Caissie (PhD Candidate) received a B.A. in Classical Archaeology from Hunter College and a B.A. in Psychology from Stony Brook University. His dissertation examines negotiations of Gallic and Roman Heritage through Roman commemorative monuments in southern France. He is interested in the material culture of the Ancient Mediterranean and issues of difficult and negative heritage. Todd is also on the Board of Directors for the NB Interment Camp Museum and co-author of a chapter, “The New Brunswick Internment Camp Museum: Preserving the History of Internment Camp B-70,” in the forthcoming (2018) book “Civilian Internment in Canada: Histories and Legacies.” Todd was also awarded the Andrew Mellon summer internship with the Zimmerli Art Museum in 2015,2016.