“Communities of practice are groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly.”
– Etienne and Beverly Wenger-Trayner
A COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE
A Philosophy to Working and Learning Collaboratively
A community of practice (CoP) is a group of people who “share a concern or passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly” (Wenger and Trainer). It is a concept derived from anthropological theory that explores social individuals are brought into a community through the practice of a particular domain.
CHARG is adopting this model as a way for participating student researchers to not only carry out research and build projects, but to explore the intersections of public archaeology and cultural heritage through the work they are building and developing.
This is a model adopted by other archaeologists (Watrall 2019), and CHARG will adopt its own strategies for building this CoP. Among them include regular meetings to work on projects, group activities to build capacity and knowledge, and a shared set of values to guide our interactions.
The Cultural Heritage and Archaeology Research Group is focused on collaborations between cultural heritage organizations relying on archaeology and other forms of material heritage to explore, study, interpret, and share the stories of people in the past with the people in the present. These collaborations will be conducted with a focus on the application of digital tools, student research, community engagement, and building lasting partnerships between Wake Forest University and the community.
CHARG is a value-based research organization, that focuses on developing a Community of Practice centered on Public Collaboration, Learning by Doing, Learning Together, Equity and Justice, and mutual respect.
WHO WE ARE
Terry P. Brock, Phd, RPA
Dr. Terry Brock is the Director of CHARG, and works at Wake Forest University as the Manager of Archaeology and Research at the Wake Forest Historical Museum, and is a Research Associate with The Cultural Heritage and Preservation Program. He is currently the co-chair of the Slavery, Race, and Memory Project at WFU. He received his PhD in Anthropology from Michigan State University in 2014, and has been working as a public and research archaeologist at national museums such as Historic St. Mary’s City and The Montpelier Foundation. His research has focused on the study of the African Diaspora, particularly in the contexts of plantation slavery and post-emancipation. He is also an expert on collaborative archaeological heritage and museum work, with an emphasis on community-based archaeology programs, hands-on archaeological learning, and public archaeology. He serves on the board for Archaeology in the Community, a non-profit public archaeology program based in Washington, DC, and MUSEws, a history museum in Winston Salem.
Dr. Brock also focuses on project management, team management, and digital heritage applications. He has led archaeological excavations with upwards of 20 archaeologists, students, and volunteers, and directed multi-year excavation projects. He and his colleagues have also focused on developing anti-racist practice in their hiring, training, and programming. He has co-directed archaeological field schools and public archaeology programs, and has experience designing and implementing heritage tours and programs that weave archaeology and history together. He is also an expert in the use of digital tools for cultural heritage application, ranging from the early use of social media for public engagement to designing and building websites for cultural heritage institutions, to building paperless, publicly engaged archaeological data collection systems using GIS. He received his professional certificate in GIS in 2018 from the University of Richmond.
Montpelier Digital Heritage Technician
Jackson DeWitt is a junior from Durham, North Carolina. He’s majoring in Anthropology and minoring in Creative Writing. He enjoys hiking, camping, reading, and playing videogames.
Montpelier Digital Heritage Technician
Alisha Amado is interested in studying the archaeology of the African diaspora and slavery. She attended Field School at Montpelier in 2021 and returned for summer 2023 as an Archaeology Intern. She is completing her Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology at UMass Boston with plans to graduate in 2025.
Africatown Digital Heritage Technician
Basia Scott is a Junior from Greer, South Carolina. She is majoring in Anthropology and minoring in American Ethnic Studies. Her academic interests include African American and Indigenous Studies. She has previously worked with The Nature Conservancy and Wake Forest’s Intercultural Center. Currently, she is working with CHARG and helping out Odd Fellow Cemetery as a Social Media Advisor.
Digital Projects Manager
Eliza is a Master’s student in the Department of Communication at Wake Forest University. Her thesis examines the relationship between sex panic, transphobia, and white supremacy in the rhetorical ecosystem of the ‘trans debate.’ She is also a Graduate Assistant Coach for the Wake Forest debate team. In her free time, Eliza enjoys cooking, listening to punk music, and being with others.
Join Our Team!
There are many ways to be a part of CHARG! We have partnerships with a number of different organizations and always include students in our research projects. If you are interested in a position below, please reach out to Dr. Brock. If you are interested in working with CHARG on a different project, don’t hesitate to reach out!
Wake Forest Historical Museum Research Intern
The Wake Forest Historical Museum and CHARG are looking for two interns interested in carrying out historical research about the enslaved community at the Wake Forest Plantation, which later became Wake Forest College. Interns will gain experience constructing a digital research database, transcribing historical documents, and contributing information for interpretive efforts. The position is only available for Internship Credit.
When: Fall 2023