In 2012, UE began cosponsoring the Jezreel Expedition with the Zinman Institute of Archaeology at the University of Haifa.
The expedition is a new archaeological project in northern Israel. The ancient city of Jezreel overlooks the biblical “Way of the Sea,” the major East-West international trade route that linked the empires of the Euphrates and Tigris river basins with Egypt. Previous excavations have discovered remains of a heavily fortified royal enclosure, possibly constructed by Ahab and Jezebel (as described in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament). The site appears to have been occupied from the fifth millennium BCE through the 20th century, so it allows scholars and researchers to study prehistoric, biblical, and modern archaeology.
In Summer 2012, the Jezreel Expedition team used a new three-dimensional model of the terrain to record points, features, and structures on the ground that generated valuable insight into the areas that most warrant exploration. The model had been created using airborne laser scanning technology (LiDAR).
“The Jezreel Expedition provides an excellent opportunity for UE students to be trained in the latest archaeological field methods and interact with an international team of archaeologists and students,” said Jennie Ebeling, associate professor of archaeology and codirector of the project. “We’re thrilled to be a part of this important project, and in coming years, we look forward to sending UE students and faculty members to work on excavations and other projects.”