Spring 2002
Volume 6 Number 3





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Dining Hall Staff Honored with “Moment of Appreciation”

PTS cafeteria workersWhen PTS’s cafeteria workers entered the Main Lounge for a “mandatory staff meeting” last December, they were certain they were in the wrong place. But, to their surprise, the decorations, the refreshments, and the crowd gathered in a standing ovation were all in their honor.

“At our first meeting this year, [middler] Freddy Rivas suggested that we do something for the kitchen workers. A number of us had made friends with them and wanted to show them how much we appreciate them,” said Mark Torres, president of the Association of Latino(a)/ Hispanic American Seminarians, the student group that hosted the event.

Festivities began as middler Karen Castro performed a Mexican song, followed by words of thanks from students Becky Barrett, Ericka Parkinson, and Laura Rivera-Cornish. PTS’s gospel choir then led a number that got everyone singing, and junior Cara Taylor offered the “Top Ten Ways You Know You’re Eating in Mackay Dining Hall,” David Letterman-style (which included “You know you’re eating in Mackay Dining Hall when the coeditor of the NRSV is just competition for the last jelly donut”). Student Wilfredo Garcia emceed the event and presented $45 gift certificates for the Olive Garden restaurant to each full-time ARAMARK staff member. (ARAMARK is the vendor that provides food service for PTS.) As the party concluded, students and staff individually expressed their gratitude to the ARAMARK workers.

ARAMARK executive chef David Coverdale, who has worked in PTS’s cafeteria for 22 years, said this event was the first time that he can remember being told by PTS that he and his work are appreciated. “I was very surprised, totally shocked,” he said. “I didn’t know how to react, except with total appreciation, which I guess is also what they were trying to show us.”

“The event went just as we had hoped,” Torres said. “We wanted them to know and feel how much we appreciate them, and in trying to bless them, we were blessed also.”