Dr. David B. Spight



Chair (2022-2023)
UC Undergraduate Academic Advising Council

Past-President (2015-2016)
NACADA: The Global Community for Academic Advising

Personal Biography

Welcome to UCI Anteaters (new and returning)! As the director, I know I speak for all of the U/U advising team when I say we’re excited to work with you as you explore your options and begin determining your own educational path at UCI. As a first generation college graduate, I know that my success in college was in great part due to the faculty, staff, and peers that helped me to have a strong support network to navigate my way through to graduation. It is a big reason I work in academic advising today.

I earned my Bachelor of Arts in History from Truman State University, a Master of Arts in educational policy and administration from the University of Minnesota, and my Doctor of Education from the University of Alabama in higher education administration (Roll Tide!).

I have spent most of the past twenty years working in higher education and with students who have not yet declared a major at institutions around the country, including the University of Texas at Austin, Colorado State University, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, and the University of Minnesota. I do not ever plan to stop learning about how we can best support and challenge students to be successful, persist to graduation, and change the world after leaving college. So, when I’m not advising students through the process of major and career exploration, I spend much of time engaging in research and study about undeclared students and college student success, or reviewing others’ research for the Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory & Practice, and as an editorial board member for the Research in Brief section of the Journal of College Student Development.

My advice to you, do these three things:

1) get engaged in your education (connect with the faculty, staff, and your peers),

2) get help (before you think you need it – because that is what successful Anteaters do), and

3) get a degree (because the reality is most employers do not care what your major is, but they will want you to earn a degree).