Jennifer Meanwell teaches classes on archaeology and archaeological materials, particularly ceramics. Her research focuses on a wide variety of ancient ceramic materials used in Mesoamerica, including pottery, pigments, plasters, and metallurgical ceramics like tuyeres and crucibles. She applies a wide variety of analytical techniques in her research but particularly focuses on ceramic petrography; X-ray diffraction; scanning electron microscopy energy dispersive spectrometer, or SEM-EDS; and Raman spectroscopy. She has worked on projects investigating a wide variety of sites in Mexico, including the Middle Balsas region of Guerrero; Mayapan, Yucatan; the Jovel Valley, Chiapas; and Calixtlahuaca.
Meanwell first came to MIT in 1997, when she began her undergraduate degree in DMSE’s Course 3-C program in archaeology and materials. She also received her PhD in archaeological materials from DMSE. She taught classes as a visiting professor at Brown University and has been teaching classes in MIT’s Center for Materials Research in Archaeology and Ethnology consortium since 2008. When not traveling for research, she enjoys cooking, scuba diving, and singing in the local community choir.