GHS Did Not Have to Look Far to Fill Principal Role


Lucas Hug

Principal Rick Nickerson adjusts to his new role.

Zander Carda, Managing Editor

Principal Rick Nickerson is new to the principal role but only had to move his belonging to the office next door. The staff and student body are already familiar with Nickerson due to his seven years spent as the assistant principal.

To step into this position, Nickerson spent multiple days being interviewed by Superintendent Devin Embray and the School Board, talking about the vision he had for the future of the high school and what he would do differently. 

“After the interviews they came back and decided I was the best person for the job,” Nickerson said.” Some of that is based on my longevity here, having a real understanding of things that we do and how we do them and my ideas that I have that can really improve the building.” 

Nickerson’s main goals this year include increasing student achievement, getting people to care more about school, improving the family culture among the study body and preparing students for life after high school. 

“Some people are going to be college bound, some will be career bound, some will join the military, and some will attend trade schools,” Nickerson said. “We want to give people opportunities within the building to try all of those things out or to go with what they want.”  

Nickerson’s days have changed a lot compared to last year. He doesn’t have nearly as much student interaction. He is having more in depth conversations with staff, making sure documents and paperwork are done and is set up for meetings. 

“I felt like my whole day revolved around talking to kids and making sure they were where they were supposed to be, attendance matters,” Nickerson said about his last years duties. “Instead of talking to students everyday, I’m talking with adults everyday.”  

Nickerson is excited to be in his new position with his new responsibilities. 

“I love my new position. I really enjoy working with Mr. Faust and Mr. Bissen,” Nickerson said. “I think we have a really unique team because we all have a different focus. The strengths that all three of us bring to the building are really going to help us.” 

Before joining the Glenwood staff, Nickerson was a fourth, fifth and sixth grade teacher, taught English as a second language at a middle school and a high school. 

“I taught in Nebraska at a small school that doesn’t exist anymore called Republican Valley, then I moved to Council Bluffs where I taught at Edison Elementary, Wilson Middle School and Thomas Jefferson High School. I also coached at Abraham Lincoln.” 

Nickerson Graduated from Grand Island Senior High in Grand Island, Nebraska. Then graduated from Doane College where he also ran cross country and track. After that he taught for a while before hitting the books again and earning his masters degree from the University of Nebraska Omaha. Nickerson received a Bachelor degree in Elementary Education and Early Childhood. He received his Masters degree in Educational Administration and Supervision.

Nickerson has four children who are all in college: a son at Iowa, a son at Creighton and two daughters at Iowa State.