Faculty Focus: Neda Barrie
Colangelo College of Business
Years at GCU: 1st year
- Bachelor’s degree from San Diego State
- Master’s in Sports Management from Saint Mary’s College of California
- Master’s in Human Psychology from Liberty University
What is your most notable accomplishment in your field, and why was it important? One of my accomplishments that comes to mind is working with a number of my former athletes to create their own 501(c)(3) foundations. It allowed us to create a vessel for giving back.
What are you most passionate about in your field and why? There is no doubt my passion is empowering others. When I was working with professional athletes, I took pride in the behind-the-scenes work and setting up my athletes for success. It’s important to connect as people first. When I’m in the classroom, I feel the same way with my students. I want them to bring their stories to life and learn to connect with others in an authentic way.
What is a memorable moment you had in class, and what does that reveal about your teaching style? One moment that stands out to me is when I was teaching athlete management and we had a discussion on social impact. The discussion was around former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the National Anthem. The conversation got extremely heated, and I stepped in because I was close to the situation and knew a lot about it. The students didn’t know where I stood on my opinion of the situation, and that wasn’t important. What was important was that they become respectful of others’ point of view and were willing to listen with an open heart and mind. The next day I received multiple notes thanking me for allowing the conversations to happen. It was a learning moment — I wasn’t going to back away from the tough conversations.
What do you like to do for fun in your spare time? My spare time is spent with my family and working out. Sports are a part of our family’s DNA, so naturally I love watching my kids’ games and being a parent fan. I enjoy running — it’s my me time.
What is something interesting about you that most people don’t know? I was 7 1/2 months pregnant with my son, who is my second child. I was with the Golden State Warriors at the time, and we had a trip to China planned to play two games. There was no backing out, so I made the trip even more interesting — I hiked the Great Wall with our entire team. I didn’t want to say I can’t because I’m pregnant.