Maddie Davis '22 — one of this year's Featured Tigers — stands second from the right with friends as graduates prepare for the commencement processional.
Maddie Davis '22 stands second from the right with friends as graduates are lined up for the afternoon commencement ceremony on May 8, 2022.

We asked faculty from Crete, Lincoln and Omaha to recommend graduating seniors in spring '22 who stood out in their classes. These students — our Featured Tigers — are just a few of the many talented and driven leaders from Doane's undergraduate and graduate programs. View all Featured Tigers here.

Let’s get started: tell us your name, your hometown, your degree program and some of the activities you participated in at Doane.

Maddie Davis, she/her

From Yutan, Nebraska

Majored in Elementary Education with an endorsement in early childhood education

While at Doane, Maddie participated in women’s basketball, the Student Athlete Leadership Team (SALT) and the Nebraska State Education Association (NSEA)

First off — congratulations! How do you feel as you head into the next phase of your life?

I am feeling all the emotions right now! I am excited to move into the next chapter of my life, but I am also not ready to leave Doane and all the people that I met here.

What’s your next step after graduation?

I accepted a job at North Bend Central Public Schools to be the new preschool teacher.

How has attending Doane prepared you for your next steps?

I am a transfer student and only had two years at Doane, but I have learned so much in my short time here. The professors and education program have gone above and beyond to make sure that I was fully prepared for the real world. There were times that I thought I would have no idea what I was doing when I went into student teaching, but I was more prepared then I could have imagined. My professors taught me how to be a professional and a leader, how to handle adversity, and even grew my passion for teaching, which I didn't know was possible. They helped me grow my confidence in myself as both a person and a teacher, and I am ready for whatever life throws at me.

What do you consider the best part of your Doane experience?

The people! College is all about who you surround yourself with and Doane has some of the best people to do that. Since it is a smaller campus it is so easy to meet and get to know people. I created a lot of relationships and met some of my best friends at Doane. Everyone is rooting for you no matter what, and I think that is what makes it so special.

What is something you’re proud of achieving or accomplishing while at Doane?

When I came to Doane to play basketball I came into a program that was rebuilding. There were two new coaches, Coach Baum and Coach Stein, and they were determined to change the culture of the program. I can proudly say that the program is heading in the right direction and that I am a great part of that. We changed the expectations of what it takes to be a Doane Women's Basketball player and have set the tone for future teams.

Headshot of Maddie Davis.

Who was a major influence for you during your education here, and how have they helped you? 

This is probably one of THE toughest questions I have ever had to answer because there were so many people here at Doane that believed in me and always pushed me to be my best. From my professors in the classroom to my coaches on the court, I don't think I could pick out just one person that has influenced me because it wouldn't be the full truth. A few that I would like to give credit to are, Tiffany Young, Nikki Piper, Cindy Meyer and Ryan Baumgartner. These few individuals were not the only influential people I encountered at Doane, but they were always there for me no matter what. I could always count on them to ask questions or share any concerns that I had. They never judged me and were always encouraging of everything that I did. They believed in me even when I did not believe in myself and for that I am grateful to have them by my side.

What will you miss the most about being a Doane student? 

I will miss Stop Day the most. It is an experience like no other, and is one of the coolest things that Doane does for its students. I created a lot of memories I will remember forever and that will be fun to look back on in the future!

What advice would you give to incoming students?

Do everything and anything! It goes by so fast and soon enough you are going to be a Senior experiencing all your lasts. These are the years you are never going to get back so live it up while you have the chance!

Finishing a degree is tough to begin with, but especially so in recent years — what has helped you overcome the challenges of the past three semesters?

Leaning on my friends and family. I like to tell myself that I am not the only one going through it, and if I am struggling I don't have to do it alone. You have such an amazing support system behind you and if they truly love you, they will be there for you. Don't be afraid to reach out, but also don't forget to be there for them in return!

Finally — what are you most excited about for your future? 

Making a difference in my students’ lives and shaping young minds!