Alpha Tau Omega - University of Nebraska-Linocln

Spring 2023 Newsletter

Gamma Theta Chapter of Alpha Tau Omega - University of Nebraska-Linocln

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A-Tau Observer 2 I n his senior year at UNL, Dr. Paul Gausman '86 gave a music recital to complete his bachelor's degree. He'll never forget looking up during the performance and seeing how many Gamma Theta brothers attended— not just to see him play music, but to support him in his journey. "The transition into college is challenging for many, and I don't believe I was different," Paul said of his freshman year. Alpha Tau Omega brought some comfort to that transition, as several members were from Paul's hometown of Fremont, Nebraska. The chapter provided academic support and structure, excelled in athletics, and was committed to helping brothers succeed in Lincoln. Those benefits have stuck with Paul throughout his educational career; so have the ATΩ relationships and networks. "It gave us all an atmosphere of like-minded students—brothers who had individual goals but worked toward them with support from one another." Preparing Others for Success Paul studied music education at UNL to pursue a career of guiding others, just as his music teachers helped guide him. He worked as a school band director for about a decade before transitioning into administration in the late 1990s. Most recently, Paul spent 15 years as the superintendent of schools in Sioux City, Iowa, where he was named Iowa Superintendent of the Year in 2014; he was also a finalist for National Superintendent of the Year in 2018. Then, after 25 years away from Lincoln (with plenty of visits to cheer on the Huskers), he returned to join Lincoln Public Schools, where he's now wrapping up his first year as superintendent. "Lincoln has a small-town feel to it, but the school district is large," Paul said. His job is to address the needs of the district through its demographic changes. For instance, the poverty rate is growing, as is the number of students who are learning English for school and speak another language at home. Paul's top goal is to ensure students leave the district with not only a diploma but a plan for their future. "We acknowledge that those plans will likely change over time as life occurs," he added. "But it's important to have a plan so you can follow a path and make adjustments as you go along." Preserving Common Bonds This year, Paul got to share a similar message with Gamma Theta during Help Week. He spoke to the brothers about how the chapter prepared him for the work he's doing in Lincoln. He also encouraged the brothers to embrace the leadership skills that brought them together. "I wanted them to recognize that leadership is a part of who they are— as individuals and as a group—and to understand the responsibility of making a difference by leading positively," he said. Paul and his wife of 33 years, Suzi, are both musicians and play for fun in their free time. An advocate for arts in education, Paul also stays connected to music as a clinician and artist with the Yamaha Corporation, specializing in marching band, percussion, and drum set performance. "I have four college degrees today thanks to ATΩ's lessons, and I'm thankful for that," Paul said. He's also grateful for the brothers and lifelong connections he's maintained since his UNL years. "Those connections are what life is about." President Grant O'Doherty '21 (402) 430-8048 Vice President Henry Thomsen '21 Treasurer Sam Kudron '21 Chaplain McClain Burton '20 Head Recruitment Chairman Sam Hellbusch '21 (402) 318-4297 Usher Max Dorfmeyer '20 Risk Manager Michael Camenzind '21 New Member Educator Jake Kannas '20 Secretary Andrew Hermanek '22 Historian Jimmy Taylor '22 Lessons in Leadership PAUL GAUSMAN '86 ON THE BENEFITS OF ATΩ You can reach Paul at CHAPTER OFFICERS

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