Engagement Beyond the Classroom

Learning doesn't stop when class is over

Chase Budziak is more than an instructor, he was a coach.

Now he is taking that same student-centered focus to his new role as Dean!

Chase Budziak came to Kishwaukee College to teach communications and be a coach. A coach of the Speech and Debate Team, that is.

His philosophy for Speech and Debate was like that of any college coach: be student-centered.

“I never turned anyone away who has an interest in speech or debate,” he explained. “Everyone who is willing to work can join the Forensics team. I looked at each student as an individual and then tailored the coaching process to the student.” Chase has been the Director of Speech and Debate at Kishwaukee College since the Fall of 2011 until this past summer. During that time, he earned kudos from his colleagues: Chase was awarded the National Coaching Award at the national tournament in 2012.

“I always want the students to take ownership of their message,” Chase explained. “I tried to help each student communicate to their strength. Everyone innately communicates. Forensics is about teaching students to manipulate what they have already been doing their entire life.”

For many students, the lessons learned go well beyond simply earning medals at competitions. Although the lack of students preparing to fill the science and technology based jobs is in the headlines, one of the biggest complaints that employers have is the lack of “soft skills,” with communication skills topping that list. Chase noted, “Speech and Debate is about teaching the importance of effectively communicating a message. Communication is the very foundation of working efficiently and well with others. It is a skill that has repercussions for people as they move forward with their education and into the work place.” 

Beginning in Summer 2016, Chase will be taking his message to a new group: the Math/Science/Business division. He has been tapped to be the Interim Dean of MSB on campus. It gives the coach a new challenge but also a new opportunity to support students from his administrative role!