Cora Fake's ePortfolio

NACUFS Internship Journal
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
8:39 PM

            Tuesday and today, I reported to Annenberg Dining Hall. Annenberg is a Civil War memorial constructed between 1866 and 1878. It is a massive operation serving more than 4,000 meals a day. This dining hall is has a lot of standards that are strictly followed. For instance, the only people allowed to eat in Annenberg are freshman, upperclassmen (for Hot Breakfast only), freshman deans, proctors, and people with prior approval from the general manager. People who are not allowed to eat at Annenberg are: graduate students, extension school students, parents or “guests” (unless they are accompanied by a freshman student), and the public. Also, tourists are not allowed to come in and take pictures or videos of Annenberg without special permission from the university.

            Annenberg is very busy no matter what position you are in. My first day I was a checker. The checker is responsible for collecting ID cards at the entrance and swiping them into the wedge. They are also responsible for completing all sale transactions including cash, board plus, Crimson cash and credit cards through the Micros system. The line for this facility can be very long. It is difficult when tourist try to get in and take pictures because they clog up the line where students come in. Also, many students do not appreciate pictures and videos being taken of them while they are eating.

            Annenberg’s general manager is named Mary Lou. She is a registered dietician. When a student has an allergy or dietary preference, she is the one they consult with. She talks to them over the phone and then plans out a time where they can meet and have a tour of the dining hall. Annenberg has a fridge specifically for students with allergies which contain gluten free, dairy free, and soy free items. The students are allowed to go into the kitchens, freezers, and refrigerators for their specific food items. The staff is very welcoming to those who have allergies and put a lot of time and effort into making their dining experience a hassle and fear free one.

            Today, I worked as a line attendant. I refilled items on the hot line, cleaned the counters, and restocked plates. Although there was not much to it, it was very strenuous and busy. The pans where very hot and needed to be refilled many times. The pace was very fast and there was a constant need to pay attention to what was going out. I liked it because it kept me busy and made the time go by faster.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


One of my learning objectives for this internship was to learn the difference between catering, retail, and residential dining. Through experiencing first hand and by conducting my own research, I believe I have come to grasp the differences and similarities of all three.

Retail is when a business sells goods and merchandise from a fixed location in small individual lots for direct consumption by the consumer. A retailer would by good from a manufacturer in large quantities, either directly or from a wholesaler, and then sell smaller quantities to the end-user. A pricing technique normally used in the retail business it the cost-plus pricing. This means that the retailer adds a markup (or percentage) to the retailers cost. They may also use suggested retail pricing. This is when the manufacturer suggests a price to the retailer by marking a price on the product. In the college scene, they look to raise money for the college. They start out with no money in the beginning to the year and every sale brings up their revenue.

Catering is the business of providing foodservice at remote sites. These sites could consist of a hotel, a pub, or other various locations. Crimson catering does mobile catering, event catering, and boxed lunch caterings. Mobile catering is usually used for outdoor events where food is taken off of a refrigerated truck and served on tables. Event catering can consist of setting up the event, serving food via self services buffets, and having waiting staff to help clean up and refill buffet line. The food can be prepared on site, or the caterer can bring pre-prepared food to the event. “Catering is often sold on a per-person basis, meaning that there is a flat price for each additional person. However, things like lighting and fire permits are not scaled with the guest count, so per-person pricing is not always appropriate. It is necessary to keep the cost of the food and supplies below a price margin in order to make a profit on the catering (Wikipedia).” Once again they start out with no money and are expected to get enough business to reach their goal revenue.

Residential dining is also known as college cafeteria. Residential dining is where there is little or no waiting staff table service. Instead of table service, there is a food-serving counter in a line or in an arbitrary walking path. Customers take the food desired while placing it on a tray. There can also be stations where a customer can order food and wait for it to be prepared. Customers are either charged a flat rate for admission or pay at the check out for each individual item. Some self-service cafeterias charge by weight of item. Within the college environment, payment is usually in the form of a meal plan. A student will have an allotted amount of “swipes” allowed and each meal they eat at the cafeteria requires one “swipe”. A cafeteria is normally given an amount of money at the beginning of the year with which to purchase food and supplies. They can use this money however they please. Each time a student swipes in, it costs the cafeteria a certain amount (Annenberg is around $2.30). The more expensive the food, the more it cost per person to eat.

Although each branch of food service has their differences, they also have some similarities. They all focus a lot on good customer service as any good business does. They also are very careful about food safety and sanitation. Although the amount of customers served depends on the location, they all strive to give a sense of community. Harvard in particular prides itself in sustainable agriculture, organic foods, and food that are grown with good ethics in mind. In the end, food service comes down to what the customer desires and Harvard does a very good job of listening to their students wants and need. Harvard cares a lot about the health of their business, the local businesses, and the well being and happiness of their students.


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