SAU Buzz

Beeswax: Nick Enz

by Edgar Rodriguez
Posted on Feb 19, 2018

Where are you from and where did you grow up?

I am from Newton, Kanas where I was born and raised. I did my schooling from kindergarten through high school.

What college did you attend?

I attended a private college that is called Newton University that is close to my hometown. It is where I discovered the path to my teaching career.

Did you ever want to become something other than a teacher?

I was originally a chemistry major with a music minor with the intention of becoming either a pharmacist or a dentist. However during my first year of college, but I found myself in the practice room a lot more than doing my chemistry homework.   With that said there I changed major to music education.

Do you play other instruments beside the saxophone?

Even though the sax is my primary instrument, I played bassoon and flute as my secondary instruments in college. I learn other instruments because music education requires learning a two to three year proficiency level on different instruments. So I can play a mean “Hot crossed buns” on every instrument

Why did you go into music, and what drove you to become a music educator?

Music had always been a part of my life. In elementary school I took piano lessons by 4th grade I picked up the saxophone. I continued learning saxophone in private lessons up and through college. So I discovered that my passion was in music. My upbringing and my mother, who was a church choir director, influenced me while I was growing up to get involved in the world of music.

Did you enjoy other things besides music while growing up?

In high school I was involved in soccer and some tennis. While in college I played on a soccer team my first year. I enjoyed it very much. Even though we didn’t win often, it was a lot of fun.

Did you still enjoy participating in sports such as soccer?

I enjoyed it very much. Though we weren’t the best team, I had lots of fun playing.  Even when I taught at Michigan Tech we had an intramural soccer team comprised of band students only and one year our team made it to the finals. I love sports and I used to play until I tore my LCA playing in a men’s soccer league. I consider soccer as a hobby more than a career.

Where did you teach before coming to St. Ambrose? What do you teach at SAU?

I was a music band director at Michigan tech university 2004-2012. I also taught music theory and music cognition. The cognition class focused on the perception of music and the psychological effects music has on it listeners. Besides directing three ensembles (the wind symphony, the concert band and the pep band), I give private saxophone lessons.

When did you arrive at Ambrose and what do you like teaching?

Ever since I arrived in 2015, I have directed bands and taught music education classes.  As for any classes, I like them all—they are all my favorite because I love what I do.

Could you tell us about your life outside of school? Are you married and do you have any children?

After I graduated from Newton in Kansas, right before I started teaching at Michigan Tech, I got married to my wife and we don’t have children.

Are there any interesting facts or hobbies you do most people don’t know about?

I love exploring off the beaten path restaurant and bakeries in different towns, it is very fun. Although I enjoy sports, most people don’t know about my love for fly fishing. I love everything about the sport such as making my own lines with the flies and using different hooks and going to different locations.

Are there any classes you would like to teach at Ambrose?

I would like to see more chamber groups of music as in brass quartets or wind quintets in our music department.

As a music educator what is your favorite type of music?

I like all kinds of music because I see lots of value in making music, therefore I don’t have an absolute favorite type of music.