After the Ph.D.: Alison Heller

Alison Heller graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in 2015 with her Ph.D. in Sociocultural Anthropology. Her research focuses on reproductive health in Niger. Specifically, Dr. Heller investigates the myriad consequences of and women’s strategies of coping with obstetric fistula, an injury sustained during childbirth that results in chronic incontinence.

Since earning her Ph.D., Heller has been a traveling faculty member for the World Learning International Honors Program. World Learning has provided her with opportunities to lead 28 students travelling abroad to Vietnam, South Africa, and Argentina, teaching four courses, and encouraging experiential learning. She has simultaneously been actively searching for a position that will allow her to continue her research through a fellowship or faculty position. Heller's hard work paid off when she was offered not one, but two, of those opportunities. 

SAR Cambell Fellowship

Heller has just been awarded the exclusive School for Advanced Research (SAR) Campbell Fellowship for Transformative Research on Women in the Developing World. One six- or nine-month residential fellowship is available for a female doctoral level scholar whose research both documents the circumstances of women in the developing world and offers paths to concrete, practical strategies for improving their health, prosperity, and general well-being. This year, Alison Heller will be that one residential fellow. She will begin the fellowship in September, 2016.

Following her fellowship with the School for Advanced Research, Dr. Heller will be a tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Maryland.