Faculty Who Care
Melissa Wehler, PhD
Dean, School of Humanities & Sciences
Melissa Wehler serves as the Dean of Humanities and Sciences. She received her doctorate from Duquesne University in English focusing on eighteenth-century British and transatlantic theatre, drama and literature. Her publications include book chapters in various edited collections, including “‘Be wise. Be brave. Be tricky’: Neil Gaiman’s Extraordinarily Ordinary Coraline,’” in A Quest of Her Own: The Female Hero in Modern Fantasy, “The Haunted Transatlantic Libertine: Edmund Kean’s American Tour” in Transnational Gothic: Literary and Social Exchanges in the Long Nineteenth Century, and “Revising Ophelia: Representing Madwomen in Baillie's Orra and Witchcraft” in Demons of the Body and Mind: Essays on Disability in Gothic Literature. She has also published book reviews and presented scholarship at various conferences on literature and teaching.
I am a lifelong student of popular culture, especially television and film, which I share with my partner, Matthew, and look forward to one day sharing with my young son, Cillian. When Pennsylvania winters are not trapping us indoors with our two chihuahuas, we can be found exploring, hiking and photographing the many wonderful state parks in central Pennsylvania.
As an undergraduate, I spent much of my time in and out of class studying Tibetan Buddhism and the history and legacy of the sherpa people have always stuck with me. On the first day of class, I tell students that I am more like their sherpa than their professor since my role is to guide them through the world of writing and thinking rather than to expose information. Students in my courses are challenged to come with me on that journey through participation, discussion and peer review because as we climb academic mountains, often all we have is one another.