The Society for Anthropology in Community Colleges (SACC) is a network of people who teach anthropology in community colleges, two-year and four-year colleges, universities and pre-collegiate institutions. A section of the American Anthropological Association (AAA), SACC was founded in 1978 to encourage dialogue and collaboration among teachers of anthropology across sub-disciplines and institutional settings, and to promote excellence in the teaching of anthropology.
How SACC Was Formed
by Chuck Ellenbaum, Emeritus
College of DuPage, Glen Ellyn, IL
In the mid to late 1970s, a group of community college anthropologists sent three different mailings to their colleagues at community and junior colleges around the country to inquire about their interest in forming their own anthropology organization. It was the third mailing by Richard Furlow, formerly of the College of DuPage in Illinois and Broward Community College in Florida, who became the founding president of SACC (1978 – 1981), having provided the impetus and critical mass to get the organization started.
In 1987, Furlow organized SACC’s first annual meeting, which took place in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Since then we have met one or more times in San Diego, El Paso, Merida, Akron, Washington, DC, San Antonio, Santa Monica, Toronto, Santa Fe, Boston, Seattle, Oaxaca, Fort Lauderdale, Vancouver, Montreal, and Savannah.
SACC has worked closely over the years with the Community College Social Science Association and the American Anthropological Association (AAA), later becoming a section of the AAA. Then, as now, SACC’s major interests are in the teaching of anthropology, sharing teaching strategies, and addressing related issues. Other SACC interests involve increasing the visibility of community colleges, working with colleges and universities, and contributing to K-12 anthropology. As an independent organization and as part of the AAA, SACC has held its own annual meetings, 18 meetings from 1987 to 2006, and has met as an organization at the AAA’s annual meetings held around the country.
What We Do
SACC sponsors annual conferences that feature academic presentations and noted guest speakers and also provide opportunities for relaxed camaraderie and stimulating collegial discussions. Conferences also include fieldtrips to local archaeological sites, ethnographically interesting communities and noted museums with expert guides and interpreters.SACC also sponsors symposiums at the AAA annual meetings. Among them is the well-known “Current Issues in Anthropology: Five-Fields Update,” in which distinguished anthropologists are invited to provide their perspectives on current trends and issues in applied, biological and cultural anthropology, as well as in archaeology.
SACC has produced the OER textbook “Perspectives: An Open Invitation to Cultural Anthropology” and is available for free at http://perspectives.americananthro.org/. Teaching Anthropology: SACC Notes is currently off-line while plans are in progress to develop a new, exciting, Open-Access publication. Nonetheless, papers from SACC and AAA meetings and the Five-fields Update presentations are updated twice a year and added to our website under Publications. SACC’s Section News column appears in the AAA’s monthly newsletter, Anthropology News (AN).