Instructor Takes Crash Landing into Massage Therapy

Diana Oberg has been a massage instructor at multiple Minnesota School of Business campuses since October 2010. Three seemingly serendipitous occurrences helped her get started in the field and in the classroom.

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Massage therapy instructor Diana Oberg gives a chair massage during the Plymouth campus' massage therapy awareness week fundraising event

The road to massage therapy was nearly a two-decade journey for Diana Oberg. The desire for a career change, a pair of car accidents and the urging of a mentor has planted her firmly in her current roles as business owner and educator.

The groundwork was laid when Oberg was 19 years old, when she was struck by a car. After trips to a chiropractor, lingering effects and several years, another car accident sent her back to the doctor.

“This time [the chiropractor] had a massage therapist,” Oberg said. “I was amazed at how it made me feel. I was in a job I hated…and decided it was time for me to go back to school.”

In 2003, Oberg earned her associate degree and opened Cloud 9 Massage Therapy in Crystal, Minn., where she offers integrative therapy and a multitude of massage styles.

“The advice my dad gave me was, ‘Do you want to work really hard to make money for someone else, or do you want to work really hard to make money for yourself?’ I love being self-employed,” Oberg said.

Teaching was never on the forefront of her mind, but after some prodding, she finally started in the classroom with Minnesota School of Business’s massage therapy program in 2010.

“For several years, Celina [McKenzie, program chair] at the Elk River campus kept trying to get me to do it and I kept putting it off,” Oberg said. “Finally, she gave my number to Steph [Petersen, program chair] at Brooklyn Center and Steph called me just when I needed her to. My husband had been laid off [from] work the same week. I went in for an interview and the rest is history. I absolutely love teaching now!”

In the last two years, Oberg has taught seven different classes, a total of 20 different sections at three different campus locations. Knowledge sharing has been a two-way street. 

“I love that teaching keeps me learning; I love the ‘ah-ha!’ moment when a student sees the results of their work,” Oberg said. “I love that I get to do what I love to do in a different capacity.”

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