As a Tauber team project advisor, David Chesney brings personal insights from both industry and academia to his teams' project experience. Dr. Chesney worked for two decades in the automotive industry as a product and process engineer and has now worked at the University of Michigan as a full-time faculty member for over fifteen years.
Dr. Chesney has won multiple teaching awards and was involved in the formation of a multidisciplinary Design Minor in the College of Engineering. He was also involved in the formation of an internal center to create hardware and software for children with cognitive and physical disabilities through a collaboration between the College of Engineering and CS Mott Children’s Hospital.
What first brought you to the University of Michigan?
I was actually recruiting for the automotive industry at the U-M Career Fair. I have always loved teaching, and so I found the correct department (EECS) and dropped off my resume.
What do you like best about teaching at Michigan and working with the Tauber Institute?
The quality of the students. Working with co-faculty from the Ross School of Business. The wide variety of interesting projects in areas that I haven't worked in before.
What are some of the highlights of your career thus far?
Truthfully, I have found U-M an absolutely wonderful place to work. I have had the privilege of working at the intersection of disability and technology with a wide variety of people and a wide variety of expertise.
What is your most memorable classroom moment?
I have always struggled with appropriate policies related to phones and tech in the classroom. I instituted a 'no phones' policy. One day, my family was visiting my lecture. A phone went off. The students were silent. It was my daughter's phone!
Is there an aspect of your life you would enjoy sharing that might surprise current and former students?
I have many hobbies and interests outside of school. I have built much of the furniture that is in my house down the basement in my woodshop. I have skied most of my life and now teach skiing for Vail Resorts (at Mt. Brighton). I really enjoy sailing and biking.