WCU Communication professor Dr. Candy Noltensmeyer was nominated for the 2020 Faculty of the Year Award, which is the only award decided solely by students at Western. Because of her nomination, Noltensmeyer will deliver the 2021 Last Lecture on Thursday, Nov. 18 at 5:30 p.m. in the University Center Theatre. 

The “Last Lecture” series began at Carnegie Mellon University in 2007 after Randy Pausch, who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, gave his final lecture on achieving childhood dreams. Years later, the “Last Lecture” became a traditional award for professors on college campuses across the country.

Dr. Candy Noltensmeyer, associate professor of communication. Photo from Dr. Candy Noltensmeyer.

Noltensmeyer, associate professor of communication, is a relational scholar whose research focuses on communicative dynamics in cultural competence, bias, feedback, social support, stigma, and sexuality.  She teaches a variety of courses in human communication focusing on theory, research methods, health, sexuality, interpersonal and small group concepts.

Recognizing that every classroom is a unique culture, Dr. Noltensmeyer believes that building a positive classroom climate is imperative to fostering engaged learning opportunities. She also believes in applied learning, especially when it comes to communication. She uses a variety of activities and focused discussions to engage students with the material to foster a student-centered classroom. 

Noltensmeyer’s presentation is titled “This is Me”: Authenticity, Inclusivity, and Connection in Relationships.” Her lecture will focus on the interconnectedness between relationships and communication.