Class prepares meal for guests at luncheon

Elizabeth Beilman

Faculty, staff and guests around campus can taste the products of the Catering and Beverage Management class this semester.

The class, which is a capstone course within the Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management Program, will host a total of five meals on campus for an average fee of $11, said Rich Patterson, associate professor in the Hospitality Management and Dietetics Program.

The course is designed to apply skills learned in all the previous courses within the major in a real-world setting, Patterson said.

All 17 students, who are broken into five groups, meet twice a week for a total of eight hours to plan the logistics of the meals, Patterson said.

“It’s like planning any event and all the details that are required for any event,” Patterson said.

Tasks include writing menus, setting menu prices, selling tickets to faculty and staff members, and preparing and serving the meal.

The second luncheon of the semester took place Thursday in the Academic Complex Dining Room.

Frankfort senior Sarah Wilson said the menu consisted of prime rib, twice-baked potatoes, broccoli provencal, butternut squash soup, apple cider, mixed green salad and three-layer chocolate bourbon cake.

Wilson said 53 people attended Thursday’s luncheon, including faculty and staff from campus, as well as members of the Bowling Green community.

Wilson, one of the four managers of the luncheon, said the program has helped prepare her for work after college.

“This major makes you do internships and practicum,” she said. “You get a better understanding of how to make things run smoothly.”

Cecilia senior Lori Yates, another manager for the project, said that although planning the details of the event was difficult, the end product was rewarding.

“I like seeing it from the beginning of us planning it to it actually being executed,” Yates said.

This meal was a 50 Mile/Kentucky Proud Meal, meaning all ingredients came from within a 50-mile radius of Bowling Green, Patterson said.

This particular course is more difficult because it requires students to cook in a typically non-culinary management class, he said.

“It’s a challenge for us because we’re not a culinary program,” Patterson said. “We’re not teaching them to be cooks or chefs. We’re teaching them to be managers.”

Because the course is a capstone, Patterson said the students work relatively independent from the professor.

“I try to give them as much autonomy as I can,” Patterson said. “I work with them each step of the way.”

Other luncheons will take place on Nov. 11 and Nov. 18, and the last meal will take place in December.