Zachary Kollbaum: Dedicated teacher and coach works to ensure students "all know the love of Christ"

Published by Brooke Lange 3 months ago on Mon, Aug 28, 2023 8:35 AM
Zachary and his wife Clarissa ('15)  and their three sons: Calvin, Elliot, and Nile.
Zachary and his wife Clarissa ('15) and their three sons: Calvin, Elliot, and Nile.

Zachary Kollbaum earned a bachelor of science in secondary education with an emphasis in mathematics and history from Concordia Nebraska in 2016.  He received a master of science in athletic administration from the university in 2019. He jokes that he first visited the university’s Seward campus because his mother forced him to, but he soon realized that he loved Concordia’s atmosphere and people. 

“It became clear that Concordia was the place for me,” he said. “I really enjoyed my visit and getting to meet a lot of new people. Everyone was always so welcoming/ I got to meet a lot of new people with whom I have formed lifelong friendships.” 

Following graduation, Kollbaum and his wife moved to Florida where he taught middle school history and was a 7th grade homeroom teacher at Grace Lutheran Church and School in Winter Haven. He also coached flag football and assisted in coaching basketball.  After two years, he was called to teach middle and high school mathematics at Lincoln Lutheran Middle/High School in Lincoln, Nebraska where he has also served as assistant football coach, assistant track coach in charge of throwers and assistant baseball coach. 

He said his professors at Concordia Nebraska helped him discover his purpose while leading him and guiding him in and out of the classroom. 

“[They were] great Christian examples, showing God's love through how they taught. It made me aspire to have that same attitude with my students that I teach and to make sure that they all know the love of Christ,” he said. “I was strengthened in my faith through the various different classes that I took as well as through the different opportunities that were provided such as chapel.” 

He said that he simply loves his job and the opportunity to interact with students each day.

“I get to teach mathematics to middle schoolers and high schoolers as well as share the gospel with these students during their time here,” he said. “I get to teach kids about math and hopefully present the materials in new ways through different activities. I love getting to see students have that "ah-ha" moment and things start clicking for them.” 

Kollbaum is married to wife Clarissa (‘15), and they have three sons: Calvin (3), Elliot (2), and Nile (1). They also have two dogs: Nelly and Seamus. 

Kollbaum’s visit to campus started a chain-reaction in his family. He is the oldest of five children, all of whom attended Concordia Nebraska. 

“We all have had wonderful experiences at Concordia Nebraska and love hearing about the new and exciting things going on there!” he said. 

Interested in discovering teacher education opportunities at Concordia Nebraska? Learn more here.