By Jodie Bomze

Kristian “Kris” Akse, a long-time PPCC faculty member, loves inspiring and challenging students at PPCC.

Akse (pronounced ‘AWK-suh’), is a Multimedia Graphic Design (MGD) professor and the Professional Photography Department Chair at PPCC. He is also a dual-citizen of the United States and Norway.

When he isn’t correcting the pronunciation of his name, managing the Photography Department, teaching MGD classes or freelancing, he loves watching sci-fi or supernatural movies, biking, skiing, reading, traveling and spending time with his kids who play instruments in bands and act in plays.

Akse said when he started school at Manitou Springs Junior High School, he tried out for the basketball team and didn’t recognize his own name when the coach called out the final players.

“I think I was ‘awk-SOW’ for the entire season,” Akse said.

As an MGD professor, he worked with Deidre Schoolcraft in the English Department to create Almagre, the former student literary and arts journal, and has also worked on the current student magazine, Parley.

He regularly worked late into the night on the journals. The lights would turn off in the building in the midst of working, he said.

Before PPCC, Akse worked for a handful of colleges in Colorado.

Akse appreciates working in the true diversity of the community college.

He describes the students in his classes as non-traditional, dual enrollment, military, and post-degree students attending for their second degree.

“I am proud to help these unique students,” Akse said. “ I like challenging them into becoming everything I know they can be. I really love it.”

For more information on PPCC’s MGD Program or the Photography Program, email