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David Weber

Jan. 24, 2017

Associate professor of communication studies David Weber believes emotional and spiritual connections breed intellectual curiosity. Those connections, he says, bridge classrooms and workforces and stimulate intellectual growth by making theory real.

As an organizational communication specialist, Weber’s teaching and research are structured around how communication choices occur in the context of culture, identity and organization.

In his current applied qualitative research course, students research, observe, interview and attempt to explain what it’s like to be a member of a particular social identity group. By working on projects and conducting research alongside his students, he connects theory using experiences and discussion rather than lecture and memorization.

When Weber was in his early twenties, he developed an interest in learning more about architecture. His interest stemmed from two of his uncles – one was a builder and the other a general contractor. They would point out the design and decorative intricacies of the buildings in downtown Los Angeles, his hometown. While appreciative of the structures, Weber was more interested in the creative minds that imagined these buildings.

It’s that curiosity that Weber aims to inspire in his students.

“My unofficial mission is to not only have students enjoy intellectual stimulation, but to welcome it with open arms. Our spirit, emotions, heart and intellect are all part of one complex knot of who we are; the intellect is not an isolated aspect of the self,” he said.

Prior to teaching, Weber had a 20-year career in organizational development that included living and working in places such as Iran, Indonesia and Japan. He joined UNCW in 1999 after earning a Ph.D. in communication from the University of Denver.

-- Breanna Tenda ’16­ and Caroline Cropp