September 21, 2023

From the museum to academics


This archived article was written by: Benjamin Waldon

Archaeologists say the wind, anthropologists say the rain. Pam Miller, a teacher of archeology and anthropology, is an explorer of prehistoric objects, a preserver of history and a museum expert. Throughout Miller’s life, the thought of helping the community and serving people was a part of her that could not be filled by anything else. While attending school she decided that she wanted to get her master’s degree in archeology, and achieved doing so. In addition, the museum became not only one of Miller’s second homes, but a receiver of many admirable assets.
In the fall of 1983 Miller began to volunteer at the CEU Prehistoric Museum. Through time she was chosen to work for the museum part time, and was elected to the museum board in 1984. Miller worked part time for a long time for the fact and reason that she had children that she needed to take care of at home. In 1988 time slots started to open up in her life and she began to teach archaeology, anthropology and geography part time.
She became museum acting director in 1996 when Don Burge became academic vice president. She later became assistant director, and spent the last 16 months as co-director. Through her work with the museum she was able to get the American Association of Museum’s stamp of approval, and get the museum AAM accredited. Through this accreditation she made it possible for the CEU Prehistoric Museum to store archeological and paleontological objects.
Besides her volunteer work for the CEU Prehistoric Museum, Miller found time to serve other organizations that help the community, some of these include; governing board of the Castle Country Regional Information Center, the board of directors of the Carbon County Travel Bureau and the Carbon County Restaurant Tax Committee. She also allowed the world to see her work for 16 years as she has been involved in Nine-Mile Canyon archeology, exploring and documenting the archeological remains left behind by previous civilization. She is also chair of the Nine-Mile interpretive plan committee.
Even though Miller has been modest in her career and through her volunteering, her acts of service for the community and for the people of the community did not go unnoticed. Miller received the 1991 Antiquities Award from the Utah State Historical Society and the 1989 Service Award from the Utah Museums Association. In 2000 she received the Utah Humanities Council Merit Award for In 2000 she received the Utah Humanities Council Merit Award for her Interpretive Plan, which is being implemented.
Recently retired from her museum duties as co-director, she is still involved in her major. She has begun teaching full time at CEU and states, “I have better office hours, and better interaction with my students.” Even though she misses the museum, teaching still has that place in her heart that she could not pass up. Fitting in with her plan to teach, Miller is now finishing her Ed.D. in curriculum and instruction in higher education from Utah State University. She states, “I believe in the mission of the community and the college. I am thrilled to be working full time as faculty.”

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