Wendy Sherman Heckler
Provost & Senior Vice President
Academic Affairs Division
Wendy R. Sherman Heckler began her career at Otterbein University as an Associate Professor of Science Education in 2007, and served as Director of Graduate Programs in Education from 2009 to 2012, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of University Programs from 2012 to 2017, and Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs from 2017-2019, before being selected to stay on as Provost and Senior Vice President. As the chief academic officer of the university and SVP, Wendy is responsible for leading and supervising the work of the Academic Affairs Division and all academic and academic support areas, as well as for collaborating with members of the President’s Cabinet to integrate the academic, advancement, enrollment, finance and student life plans into the institutional strategic plan. Sherman Heckler has taught courses in science teaching methods for pre-service and in-service teachers; Master’slevel research methods; current issues in education; physical science; life science; integrative studies (energy and society); and women’s leadership. She has served as advisor, second reader, or graduate faculty representative on 59 Master’s level projects at Otterbein, and as faculty representative of the Honors program on undergraduate student defenses. Wendy has authored entries on Wittgensteinian perspectives of research related to student learning in science for the Springer Encyclopedia of Educational Philosophy and Theory and the International Handbook of Research in History, Philosophy, and Science Teaching. She currently serves on the Editorial Board of Ethnographic Studies and was co-organizer of the 2017 International Institute for Ethnomethodology and Conversation Analysis, held on Otterbein’s campus. Between 2010 and 2018, Sherman Heckler received over $850,000 from the Ohio Department of Higher Education to enroll 225 middle grades science teachers from 56 school districts around Central Ohio (in 20 different counties) in a physics professional development course.
Sherman Heckler’s service to Otterbein includes co-chairing the university-wide Accreditation Steering Committee from 2011- 2015, which spearheaded the University’s reaffirmation of accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission. She has also co-chaired or chaired other groups including the Institutional Effectiveness Committee, working sub-groups of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, and the General Education subcommittee of Curriculum Committee. She has served on the campus team overseeing Otterbein’s Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation (TRHT) Campus Center since its inception. As a member of Cabinet, Sherman Heckler worked with colleagues to implement a new compensation structure for faculty and staff, and as Provost she re-organized Academic Affairs to better connect Academic departments to each other and to other University divisions. Her administrative work has encompassed outreach to Otterbein’s K-12 and higher education partners, as well as coordination of internal efforts to promote students’ academic success. Sherman Heckler currently serves as Past Board Chair of Communities In Schools of Ohio, a nonprofit focused on dropout prevention for K-12 students. She received the Martin Luther King Peace and Justice Award from Otterbein in 2017, the Community Support Award from the Columbus City Schools Board of Education in 2018, and was a 2022 Calendar Honoree of the Columbus (and founding) chapter of Women for Economic and Leadership Development (WELD).
Sherman Heckler earned her bachelor’s and her master’s degrees, as well as her doctorate in teaching and learning, from The Ohio State University. Before coming to Otterbein, she was a tenured Associate Professor at Kent State University.