HSHP students to bring ‘New York Style’ to Goldstein Center
Given a location, date, budget, 11 weeks and the theme “The World of Hospitality: New York Style,” students are bringing their creative and culinary skills to bear on an April 11 gala event. The students, in the nutrition and hospitality management program (NHM) in the College of Human Services and Health Professions (HSHP), have invited more than 50 guests to Syracuse University’s Goldstein Alumni and Faculty Center.
Building on the program’s first-year success, students are again starting from scratch to design, manage and host an evening dinner program that includes a reception at 6 p.m. and dinner at 7 p.m. Ten seniors in NHM 418, along with 25 undergraduates from the hospitality management program, are coordinating this event to showcase the students and the program. It is also part of the capstone project course for seniors.
“This event is a wonderful opportunity for students to develop their personal management skills as well as their technical skills,” says Norm Faiola, chair of the NHM department and faculty coordinator of the project. “Students learn the importance of teamwork and time management as they are challenged to create and implement this event while they are taking other courses and enjoying their senior year.”
The guest list includes professionals from the hospitality industry, members of HSHP’s Board of Visitors, HSHP Dean Bruce Lagay, faculty members and other friends of the program.
To plan and manage the event, the participating students are divided into two groups. One team works from the “back of the house” focusing on the menu development, food preparation and handling, and vendor coordination. Last year, vendors such as Libbey Glassware, Syracuse China, Saranac Brewery and Eber Brothers Wine and Liquor contributed to the event. This year, Hudson Valley Farm is donating half of the needed foie gras and providing the rest at half cost; other vendor contributions are still being collected.
The other team, working in the “front of the house,” is charged with creating and managing the appearance of the event. This includes careful selection of table linens and decorations, as well as auditioning musical talent, invitations and making rental agreements for place settings and equipment.
The program will consist of four courses (appetizer, salad, entree, and dessert), plus hors d’oeuvres during the reception hour. This year’s theme, “New York Style” will feature in-state products and ingredients, including New York State wines, apples, cheeses, maple syrup and Long Island duck, according to Cori Weinstein, junior food service and hospitality major in HSHP and general manager of the event. “The most challenging part of organizing this is keeping all of the little details under control and making sure the other managers stay on top of everything,” she says.
Students are judged on the quality of the event’s organization and their level of professionalism. “I am impressed by the level of commitment and the pride that these students have for the event and the guests they will welcome and serve–that is what hospitality is all about,” says Faiola.