Heather Wholey, a professor in the anthropolgy department at West Chester University, is recognized for her accomplishments in Beyond the Blackboard. For the past 15 years, Dr. Wholey has conducted a great number of archeological excavations. For the past four years she has taught at WCU.Dr. Wholey earned her undergraduate degrees in Anthropology and Geography at S.U.N.Y.-Albany (State University of New York). She became interested in archaeology through her first hands-on experience in her undergraduate field techniques course. Although Dr. Wholey did not initially set out to become an instructor, she started teaching in graduate school at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. as part of a scholarship award.
At West Chester University, Dr. Wholey brings together two things she loves most: archeological investigation, where she unearths ancient artifacts dating from 12,000 B.C. all the way through to the colonial era, and demonstrating the skill of excavation.
As part of her archeological studies, she teaches a summer course in archaeological fieldwork, usually at local area sites, sharing her enthusiasm for archaeology with her students. The relics that are discovered through these excavations are usually housed at museums, although some are on display in the Old Library’s main lobby.
Along with her field studies course, Dr. Wholey also teaches courses such as Introduction to Anthropology and Introduction to Archaeology. She also teaches on the archaeology of Central America, where she introduces first-hand examples from her research work in the Guatemalan Mayan region.
Dr. Wholey takes pride in her work, said Nancy Higginson who attended the archaeological field technique course this past summer taught by Dr. Wholey. Higginson said that archaeology might not be for the faint-hearted, citing bugs and heat. Higginson also said that to protect these sites, their location may often be undisclosed. From Higginson’s statements, it is clear that if one should like to experience the ups and downs of field archaeology, enroll in Dr. Wholey’s field session.