May 30, 2024

Bergera changes job descriptions

“I do not like to think of this as retirement so much as maybe just a change in the job description,” states Cliff Bergera, art faculty member of 15 years for the College of Eastern Utah.   Bergera explains why he feels this way, “I am retiring from teaching but not from painting. As a painter I plan to work harder than ever. In that sense I am not really retiring, I am just tweaking the job title.”

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This archived article was written by: Lindsey Sweat

“I do not like to think of this as retirement so much as maybe just a change in the job description,” states Cliff Bergera, art faculty member of 15 years for the College of Eastern Utah.   Bergera explains why he feels this way, “I am retiring from teaching but not from painting. As a painter I plan to work harder than ever. In that sense I am not really retiring, I am just tweaking the job title.”
“My full name is Clifford Hreinson Bergera but to everyone I’m just Cliff,” states Bergera. “I was born in the Carbon County Hospital, which is now the Computer Business Building (CBB).” He then adds, “I guess that means I haven’t gone very far in life, just across campus.”  
Referring to his schooling experience he states, “I attended Wasatch Academy High School and Utah State University. I received a BFA and an MFA degree from Utah State University in drawing and painting.”  After receiving his degree, Bergera “worked at the Hansen Planetarium in Salt Lake City, which is now the Clark Planetarium.”  He was there for three years working as an art director and recalls, “It was a fun place to work.”  Work experience before CEU for Bergera also included driving “a beer truck for 15 years for his family’s business.”
Bergera continues to tell about his personal life. “I have a wife, Janet, one daughter, Lisa, a son in law, Nathan and three grandchildren, Collin, Maddy and Carter. There is a wild cat that sleeps on our patio but I would not call it a pet. I live in Helper, one block from where my parents lived.” He concludes, “Again I haven’t gone far in life.”
However this statement is proven false when Bergera confesses to having traveled outside of the country while studying art, “I like to go to Italy for the art and culture. I sneak off to Santa Fe now and then as well, also for the art.” Traveling also provided the opportunity for him to take, “a sabbatical leave in 2005” where he went to Florence, Italy, to paint and study art. “In 2007 I was invited to exhibit with a group of international artists in an exhibition at San Miniato al Monte, a monastery near Florence.”
Bergera’s responsibilities at CEU include teaching “three studio courses this year and I am gallery director at Gallery East.  As director I have arranged six exhibitions over the course of the school year.”  Throughout the years he has also been involved with other areas. “I was chairman of the art department for seven years, I taught the general education course for the department for 14 years and I was also one of the first instructors to teach a class on the EdNet System.”  
After all of these successes Bergera feels , “a great sense of accomplishment when I see former students succeeding in an art career. I like to think I had some input toward their success.” Admitting what he has enjoyed most at CEU, Bergera states “I have enjoyed the students who are serious about art and are willing to work hard.  I have enjoyed the many friendships among colleagues within the department and in the college at large.”
Referring to retirement, Bergera states, “I plan on developing a second career as a gallery artist. I will be retiring from teaching but I will continue to paint and hopefully sell my work.” He then expresses, “This is something I’ve always wanted to do and now is my chance.”