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Karen Weaver, Ed.D.

Associate Clinical Professor
Sport Management


Program Associations

  • B.S., Sport Management
  • M.S., Sport Management


  • Ed. D., University of Pennsylvania
    Higher Education Management
  • M.S., Purdue University
    Sport Sociology
  • B.S., Lock Haven University
    Physical Education/Biological Sciences

Areas of Expertise

  • Media and Technology
  • Finance
  • Higher education administration
  • Governance
  • Marketing
  • Social media

Professional Experience

  • Drexel University, Center for Hospitality and Sport Management (Aug. 2012-present)
    Associate Clinical Professor, Sport Management
  • Burgher/Gines/Weaver Higher Education Management Co. (July 2012-present)
  • The Learning Alliance (2011-present)
  • ESPN (2011-present), NCAA Division I Field Hockey Broadcast (2010-present), CBS College Sports (2009-present), Big Ten Network (2007-present)
    Color Analyst for ACC Field Hockey
  • Conference Broadcasts, Inc. (2010-present)
  • Penn State University-Abington (2006-12)
    Director of Athletics, Intramurals, and Recreation
  • University of Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletics (2000-04)
    Associate Athletics Director
  • Cecil College (1998-2000)
    Director of Athletics
  • Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games (1995-96)
    Announcer and Assistant Producer
  • Ohio State University (1987-1996)
    Field Hockey Coach
  • Salisbury University (1982-87)
    Field Hockey and Lacrosse Coach/Faculty

Research Interests

  • College sports media and finance
  • Broadcast television media rights and rights holders
  • Governance issues
  • Social media and marketing


Dr. Karen Weaver joined the faculty at Drexel University in 2012 as an Associate Clinical Professor. She teaches in the Undergraduate and Graduate Sport Management Program. She is also a Lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania, teaching in both the Executive Doctorate Program and the Master's program in Higher Education Management.

An award winning author, Weaver has written several influential and well circulated articles about the broader issues facing higher education and intercollegiate athletics. She focuses on the view from the Office of the President and the Board of Trustees, advocating for more transparency and clarity in athletic decision making. Her articles are particularly useful for graduate students studying higher education.

Her dissertation, "The Launch of the Big Ten Network: How 11 Universities Created Their Own Television Network and Changed the Landscape of College Sports" received distinction at the University of Pennsylvania. Used by NCAA Division I Presidents, Conference Commissioners and Athletics Directors, the research was used as a road map for other Division I conferences to follow in creating their own television networks.

Prior to Drexel, Dr. Weaver was Penn State Abington’s athletics director. During her tenure, she added six new teams, eight new head coaches and over 125 new athletic opportunities for student-athletes., all while leading the college into NCAA Division III in 2012.

Dr. Weaver is a member of the Montgomery Council Advisory Committee for the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, an advocacy group for equal rights under the PA Constitution. She also serves on the Alumni Board of the University of Pennsylvania's GSE Executive Doctorate Program.

Off campus, Weaver is nationally recognized as an expert in broadcast rights, media and branding strategies, and social media. Her expertise in the area of institutional advocacy for protection of current and future video content rights has been called visionary. She has spoken about collegiate broadcast media rights and the Big Ten Network both nationally and internationally, including the University of the Sorbonne in Paris, at the NCAA Convention, and to collegiate sport conferences around the United States. She received the University of Pennsylvania’s Early Career/Alumni Award of Merit. Weaver serves as a consultant to the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics (

Weaver has been quoted, published and interviewed by some of the leading news outlets in the world, including BBC, USA Today, Orlando Sentinel, New York Times, Indianapolis Star, Detroit Free Press,  WHYY's Radio Times, 6ABC-TV, KYW News Radio and Minnesota Public Radio. She has written extensively about the financial issues facing higher education and athletics in leading trade publications including Athletic Management Magazine and Street and Smith’s Sports Business Journal. Her Twitter feed @collegeathlete has been recognized as one of the top 100 for college sports fanatics to follow, and her followers include writers and editors from Sports Illustrated, Chicago Tribune, Cleveland Plain Dealer, Orlando Sentinel, Sports Business Journal, The New York Times, and sports management faculty around the country. Her chapter “Connecting Fans and Teams More Intensively with Social Media” was published in 2011 in the book "Higher Education with Social Media" (C. Wankel, Ed.). Her articles "Media Deals, College Football and Governance: Who's in Charge?" (2013) and “Paying for Big Time College Sports,” (2011) in Change: The Magazine for Higher Learning, were selected as Editor's Choice articles, signifying their selection as a top article of that year.

She is a sought after speaker for athletic recruiting events, academic conferences and graduate sports management classes. She has been a color analyst for the Big Ten Network, ESPN and CBSCollegeSports, covering regular season games and NCAA Championships in the sport of field hockey.

Prior to her arrival at Penn State, she provided department wide leadership as an Associate Athletics Director at the University of Minnesota, a program that supports 750 student-athletes, 25 varsity sports and 215 full-time employees. A member of the senior management team, Weaver was responsible for all personnel matters in the department, chairing or serving on numerous search committees. For several years she was the chief financial officer, overseeing an $11.8 million budget, and managing the day to day finances of the department. She also oversaw six sports, four of which were Big Ten Conference champions.

Weaver spent 16 years as a collegiate head field hockey coach, with 10 of those years as a coach in NCAA Division I. Her teams made five postseason appearances and won an NCAA National Championship while going undefeated, the first team to do so. She has also been a top national and international coach, and twice was a member of the board of directors of the United States Field Hockey Association. She served as the broadcast announcer and assistant producer for men's and women's field hockey at the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta, Ga.