Close menu Resources for... William & Mary
W&M menu close William & Mary

Humor and Heritage
Erin Cearlock










Making people laugh is my passion. As a Trippin’ On Brix Sketch Comedy & Improv Troupe member, I write comedy sketches and perform improv onstage in our three shows a semester. Before coming to college, I would never have had the confidence to join a comedy group, but TOB has pushed my creative expectations for myself and what I am capable of. Furthermore, I am a company member of the Sinfonicron Student-run Light Opera Company and recently portrayed Sir Joseph Porter in a production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s H.M.S. Pinafore. The Company returned to Williamsburg in early January to collaborate on the entirely student-run production, allowing me to live and work with other creatively minded students. Lastly, I am currently involved in producing a new comedy web series, The Creative Types, under the direction of W&M Film Professor Kevin Smith, exploring narrative filmmaking and acting. Through my involvement in the performing arts community, I have become a more effective and humorous communicator, a skill with which I hope to engage audiences in my future career.


Academically, I am involved in multiple aspects of archaeology and heritage-focused research. This past summer, I completed archaeological field school at Colonial Williamsburg and am currently completing my Certificate in Public History & Material Culture through W&M NIAHD. As a Conservation Research Program Fellow at the Institute for Integrative Conservation, I am completing a year-long research project on the marine conservation and fishing heritage of Rurutu, French Polynesia. I will work with local conservation partners to document fishing practices and oral traditions on the island when I travel there this summer. Additionally, I am completing an Honors Thesis in the Anthropology Department as a Charles Center Fellow and Altshuler Scholar focused on community-engaged cultural heritage management. I am investigating indigenous conceptualizations of cultural heritage and UNESCO policies in the Pacific Island region. This ties into my work as a Cultural Heritage Theft Intern for Homeland Security Investigations, Honolulu, as part of the Virtual Student Federal Service. These experiences all build upon my Anthropology and Government majors and my position as a research intern in the W&M Oceanic Archaeology Lab. I hope to develop intercultural fluency as I work towards becoming a community-focused cultural heritage lawyer.