Assistant Professor of Global Studies
Office: Jesse 213
Office phone: 402-643-7343
Tobin Beck teaches global studies, which is the second of four General Education core courses. Beck also teaches journalism courses within Concordia's communication major. Beck's career in journalism spans more than 30 years and has given him experience writing and editing for broadcast, newspapers, the Web and magazines. He has taught at American University in Washington, D.C., and George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., where he was adjunct professor of the year in the Communication Department in 2006-2007. He grew up in Seward, where his father, Theodore, taught music at Concordia.
B.A. Journalism, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Global Issues, Media Survey, Intro to Broadcast Journalism
Beck's first job after college graduation was as sports editor for the Sidney Telegraph newspaper in western Nebraska. He became city editor and acting managing editor of the Telegraph and then moved on to work as a United Press International wire service reporter in Omaha and Lincoln.
He became UPI's Nebraska state editor in Lincoln, Plains Region editor in Milwaukee and Southeast Region editor in Miami. He then was transferred to Washington, D.C., where he held news management posts including deputy managing editor for North America; managing editor; senior managing editor; and executive editor, supervising UPI's day-to-day newsgathering operations.
After leaving UPI Beck became a senior editor for a group of history magazines in Leesburg, Va. He began teaching as an adjunct at American University in 2005 and at George Mason University in 2006.
"My dad always said that teaching was the best profession in the world, and he was right," said Beck. "I feel that everything I've done up to now has been preparation for teaching." Concordia holds special meaning for Beck because of his family's longtime connection to the school. Not only did his father, Theodore, teach at Seward for nearly 50 years, but his grandfather, Albert Beck, taught for nearly that long at Concordia's sister school in River Forest, Ill.
Beck sees Concordia as a great place to teach about global issues and journalism. "When working on stories I often thought about Luther's teaching to 'put the best construction on everything.' For me that meant doing my best to make sure the stories I worked on clearly and honestly conveyed what all sides were saying, with enough context for people to understand them.
"I learned, practiced and now teach the critical thinking skills that are necessary not only for good writers but for anyone interested in people across the globe -- how to identify facts and use them as a foundation for decisions, how to sort fact from fiction or opinion, how to recognize bias or prejudice -- how to identify and understand key issues facing people around the world. Those are skills that help provide the knowledge to act on Christ's call to 'let your light shine.'"