For 12 years, Dr. Vicki Cassman has shared her passion for learning, teaching, and the preservation of cultural heritage with students at the University of Delaware, most recently as the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the UD’s Department of Art Conservation.
Cassman's UD journey began during a summer internship in northern Chile while a Fellow in the Winterthur/ University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation (WUDPAC) in the early 1980s, where she was dismayed to see archaeologists padding ceramics with 2,000 year-old textiles found at the same ancient burial sites. She wanted archaeologists to know that textiles were important, but also knew they might not listen to an art conservator. So, after completing her masters in art conservation, she earned a Ph.D. in archaeology at Arizona State University. The experience is part of what Cassman sometimes refers to as her “itinerant” life. She believes her continued studies helped her promote conservation to allied fields; her wide-ranging writings in textile conservation, anthropology, and archaeology include a standard in the field she co-edited entitled Guide to the Treatment of Human Remains for Museums and Academic Institutions (2007).