Kalika Jantzen – Southeast Community College

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Star City Six – Kalika Jantzen

Southeast Community College (SCC) operates within its 15-county service area of southeast Nebraska and has full-service campuses in Beatrice, Lincoln, and Milford. Kalika Jantzen is director of counseling at Southeast Community College (www.southeast.edu).

Tell us a little about your business.

At its end, counseling is meant to be a supportive and changing process for any individual. I have worked as a counselor in the Lincoln and surrounding area communities for 15 years, and was recently hired at Southeast Community College as the director of counseling and assistance program for students. In this position, I provide counseling and education on a wide variety of topics to help the students at SCC be successful.

How did you get started in the business?

I found joy helping others early on in life. I stumbled into an Introduction to Counseling class while at Nebraska Wesleyan University. I was a biology major and intended to study medicine, but the professor of this class commented on my abilities to listen and be nonjudgmental. It felt like a natural fit, so I changed my future plans and enrolled in Doane University’s Master’s of Arts in Counseling program.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced professionally?

I have a front row seat to watch people do some of the bravest and most agonizing work of their lives. There is a level of empathy and concern I come to have for those whom I attempt to help.

What has been your most important achievement professionally?

I am independently licensed, which allows me to treat specific severe and persistent mental illnesses, as well as supervise other practitioners and students. I am also proud to be EMDR and DBT trained.

Tell us a little about your family.

I grew up in a small community and with a large family. I met my husband in high school and we dated through college. He is an attorney in Lincoln and we have been married for 12 years. We have three great kids together, ages 10, 8, and 4.

What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know?

I am the oldest of six and we all have unique first and middle names. I continued that tradition with my kids.

What is your favorite quote or the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

“People who need help often look a lot like people who don’t need help,” by Glennon Doyle Melton and “What is to give light must endure burning,” by Viktor Frankl.

If you had a theme song, what would it be?

I can get into all types of songs and feel they relate to me. Currently, I have had the soundtrack from Dear Evan Hansen on repeat.

What local non-profit organization(s) are you passionate about or involved with, and are there any special reasons why?

The Lincoln Children’s Zoo, Girls on the Run of Nebraska, and Flatwater Shakespeare Company. Each of these organizations is a great asset to our community for learning and growth.

What is your favorite book or the last good book you read?

The Soul of An Octopus—A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness by Sy Montgomery was amazing to me.

What is your favorite movie?

The Revenant or Les Misèrables. There are too many great movies to choose from!

What is your favorite TV show?


What is your favorite local restaurant?

Dish and Vung Tau Pho Grill.

If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be?

Michelle Obama or Viktor Frankl.

If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so?

Email: KJantzen@southeast.edu; Website: www.southeast.edu.


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