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'There are whole worlds to be discovered'

Daniel McCoy unearths a passion for archaeology and ancient cultures through Blinn’s Anthropology Program

Daniel McCoy unearths a passion for archaeology and ancient cultures through Blinn’s Anthropology Program

November 21, 2023

Daniel McCoy is naturally curious. After stints in the U.S. Army and as a fitness instructor left him searching for more, he discovered the Blinn College District Anthropology Program and hasn’t looked back.

“When I saw anthropology as a major, it clicked. I have a personal interest in human behavior, cultures, and old things, and this field seems like the type of mystery that would keep me intrigued forever,” McCoy said. “There are whole worlds to be discovered.”

McCoy, a Georgia native in his first semester of the program, credits his instructors and courses like physical anthropology with helping him realize his passion for archaeology.

“Every instructor has been very welcoming and willing to do whatever it takes to make sure I succeed,” McCoy said. “I really feel like I hit gold. I found my spot.”

McCoy volunteers on an archaeology project at Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site that he was connected to through his U.S. History instructor, Tommi Ivey. He supports a team working to establish the location, context, and styling of the township that existed on the site when the original Texas Declaration of Independence was signed in 1836.

“I do a lot of sifting and lab work, but it’s not just physical labor, it’s about learning,” he said. “You get your hands in the dirt to see what you’re looking for. It’s so much fun.”

McCoy plans to transfer to Texas A&M University to pursue a bachelor’s degree in anthropology with a focus on archaeology.

“If it wasn’t for Blinn, I really don’t know what I would have done,” he said. “I love how personable it is. I can ask a question and the instructor sees me. It helps create a very comfortable atmosphere and I do think that if you’re comfortable, you’re going to learn a little better.”

McCoy wants to take the spark that Blinn ignited as far as possible. After he earns his bachelor's degree, he plans to gain more hands-on experience by participating in an archaeological field school in a location like Belize or South America with the long-term goal of earning his doctorate. He also hopes to teach one day.

“I’d like to take my studies as far as I can go,” he said. “The dream would be a Ph.D.”

Wherever McCoy’s curious mind takes him, he knows Blinn will have played an important role in his journey.

“This will definitely be a place I remember along my path,” McCoy said. “It welcomed me with open arms. Blinn felt like it was saying, ‘I see that you seek knowledge. We’re here.’”

Blinn offers an Associate of Arts in Anthropology that is available entirely online and on the Brenham, Bryan, RELLIS, Schulenburg, and Sealy campuses. The degree transfers seamlessly to many bachelor’s degree anthropology programs at four-year universities. For more information, visit

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