Dr. Peter W. Schuhmann, a professor in the Department of Economics and Finance, lists his primary teaching interests as natural resource economics, principles of economics, econometrics, and the economics of growth and development.
Dr. Schuhmann finds that "inspiring students to want to learn is the most challenging and important aspect of teaching." Consequently, he considers how he teaches as important as what he teaches. His goal is to teach students that "true learning goes beyond the acquisition of information and is an active process of discovering, processing, and applying knowledge. Learning involves raising questions and systematically resolving them. Learning requires critical thinking and cognitive effort." Recognizing that "being a successful college student is hard work" and that if he is going to hold students to a high standard he must be available to help them, he has an open-door policy concerning student visits.
A colleague, calling him "an exciting, superb master teacher," notes that he is "known to spend countless hours working one-on-one with students to help them achieve a level of academic performance far more appropriate to graduate than undergraduate work." Another writes, "[He] is not only an outstanding teacher, but also a mentor and a model as well for the students he teaches. He personifies the qualities, the virtues, that students long for in their educators. Virtues like honesty, compassion, a strong sense of fairness, and devotion to his profession... He has the ability to break down a difficult concept into small manageable segments for students to chew on and digest them well." According to another colleague, his effectiveness as a teacher "has become legendary in our department. Professor Schuhmann has an uncanny ability to create examples that come alive in students' minds... Sophomores through seniors, master's-level students, professional development programs -the age, experience level, background of the student does not matter, as [his]lectures 'get through' to them all." And another writes, "Students continually rave about Pete's clarity of explanation and ability to stimulate interest in the 'dismal science' even though he teaches large sections of approximately 200 students each semester. One unknown student sums it up very nicely: "You have shown me what it is to dedicate yourself to something."
His commitment to teaching also extends beyond the classroom. As co-founder of the annual UNCW Regional Economics Teaching Workshop, which has attracted approximately 75 attendees from at least 10 states for the past 12 years, Dr. Schuhmann helps other faculty who wish to improve their classroom style. In addition to research related to the economics of natural resource use, he has published several articles on pedagogy.
At UNCW since 1999, Professor Schuhmann has received a Chancellor's Teaching Excellence Award, a Board of Trustees Teaching Excellence Award, a Distinguished Teaching Professorship Award, an outstanding MBA faculty award and recognition as an Impact Instructor in the Cameron School of Business every year since 2001. He received a baccalaureate from UNC Wilmington and a master's and doctorate from North Carolina State University.< div class="controlBtns"> Close