Student-Run Café Reopens for Spring Semester

Abbey Whittington, Staff Reporter

The Klehm Café, a student-run food service operation, will be open this semester at 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays in room 1414.

The Café serves as practice for the students who are a part of the family and consumer sciences department as well as a break area for faculty and staff.

The family and consumer science students who are focusing on the department’s subcategories such as dietetics, hospitality and family services are able to work in the Café in order to get experience for what their future work may be.

Amanda Winkler, senior family and consumer science major with a concentration in hospitality management, has worked her way up to becoming a manager for the Café.

Before earning the position, she had taken a course in commercial quality food production.

Winkler shadowed the previous lab assistant to learn what she would need to do when she had the position.

“Being a manager, I supervise the students working in the kitchen. I teach them the correct safety procedures and how to use the equipment, order all of the food and equipment needed and handle the money,” Winkler said.

When it comes to Winkler’s future, she said the position has been a good addition to her resume and her management position has already sparked employer’s interests.

The Café had closed before because of the course Pantera where students served dinner on Tuesday nights.

Nicole Hugo, an assistant professor in the family and consumer sciences department, said Pantera was good for students to learn how to prepare and serve a meal but did not give practical business experience, which is why they went back to the Café.

“If the students are running a café for lunch, serving multiple days in the week and seeing how much food they’ll have to order then they are experiencing more of the business operations,” Hugo said.

Even though the program has had little marketing, the café recently had 24 people come in for lunch, leaving only one table open in the facility.

The café makes their food fresh and from scratch with drink prices ranging from $1 to $4 and entrees from $5 to $7.

While the dietary and hospitality courses are required classes for all family and consumer science majors, Winkler said that working in the Café has changed her view on food service.

“Before working in the café I really did not have any interest in working in the food industry,” Winkler said. “Now that I know what goes into making the Café run, I could see myself running a restaurant one day. Working here has shown me how rewarding it can be to see everything come together.”


Abbey Whittington can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]