By Aubreigh Heck / Online Editor
Dan “Coach Nac” Naccarato started the 2020-2021 school year as a presidential candidate, and ended it with Hutchinson Community College’s Educator of the Year award.
Coach Nac, a business and leadership instructor who consistently receives local write-in votes for presidential elections, has immense pride for the school he teaches at, and he said he felt honored to win this award.
“When (Student Government Association) President Zach Shanline made the announcement at HutchCC Commencement I was grateful, happy, and inspired,” Naccarato said, “We have so many outstanding educators and students here at HutchCC. It’s truly inspiring to be a Blue Dragon.”
Coach Nac means a lot to his students, even inspiring them to choose business as a career.
“The way that he teaches is super easy to understand,” said Andrew Prieb, a freshman from Canton in Naccarato’s class. “I came into college not sure what I was going to do, but I took this business class and I think it’s opening me up to it. I think that makes me want to take business courses throughout, because I’m planning on going to a four year after this, and I want to go for a business major.”
Coach Nac had an early start as a teacher, after a dean at Emporia State University approached him as a teaching replacement for his father as a graduate assistant.
“My dad was a college professor,” Coach Nac said, “I always wanted to follow in his footsteps.”
Years passed, and an opening at HutchCC in 2004 for a business instructor seemed like a perfect fit.
“I always wanted to return to the classroom …The time was right. Every day seems like a holiday around here,” Naccarato said.
Since then, Naccarato grew into his position, and has held himself to high standards. He hopes his students and colleagues will expect three main things from him.
“They can trust me to consistently say what I mean and mean what I say, we genuinely care about people at HutchCC, we’re willing and able to help students learn how to achieve their goals,” Naccarato said.
He uses these expectations to garner respect and always reminds students, “It’s a great day to study Business!”