An Interview with Bob and Cliff
In the list of pros and cons of a liberal arts education, getting to study things outside your major falls into both.
While students at the time may find it annoyingly unproductive, years after graduation they realize just how beneficial it is to study more than just one field.
For Cliff Kester, '85, how his education professors taught him on how to deal with people has helped him far past the classroom.
As a Physical and Elementary Education major, Cliff always knew he wanted to coach and teach. He was a great athlete for Doane, playing as the wide receiver for the football team and a mid-distance runner for the track team.
Right after college, Cliff started his teaching career in Sidney, Iowa teaching 5th grad and helping coach wrestling. He went on to teach physical education and coach at various locations throughout his career, landing in his hometown of Cambridge, Nebraska.
Now, retired from teaching, Cliff manages Besler Industries Incorporated and he especially uses his knowledge of how to deal with people in this position. His favorite part about Doane was the personal relationships, and how the professors really helped in finding a job after graduation.
This is something Robert (Bob) Henn, '83, can also relate too. Bob came to Doane for football and knew he wanted to coach but he didn't want to be a teacher. Instead, he majored in Business Management, a field where he met great professors who really cared about him. He also played intramural sports and was in the Tau Sigma Zeta fraternity.
After graduation, a former classmate, Ed Fye, helped Bob get a job at Lawlor's Sporting Goods. He made his way up to store manager at Lawlor's until it closed in 2000, when Bob took up a job at Nebraska Sports where he is currently the manager.
Doane helped him with this career path because in a small school, you get to know everyone and really learn how to have substantial conversations with people, and how to approach people, a great skill to have in management.
Direct classes helped both these Doane alumni be successful in their life, but the well-rounded education from a liberal arts degree really pushed them even further.