Students learn etiquette in five courses – free

Noelle Pennyman

Kent Interhall Council members gather in the Schwebel Garden Room Friday to learn Western European etiquette. LESLEY KATZENMEYER | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: Jason Hall

Students learned fine dining while laughing and chatting with friends.

John Goehler, assistant director of University Dining Services and executive chef, gave a presentation on Western European Etiquette Friday night.

About 70 students enjoyed a five-course meal in the Schwebel Garden Room.

“I thought the event was spectacular,” said Emily Kloosterman, director of leadership development of Kent Interhall Council.

Kloosterman said she had been coordinating the event for months with Goehler.

During his presentation, Goehler told students the proper way of socializing with people at social events and how to behave on lunch or dinner interviews. He also explained the location and purpose of the flatware on the place settings.

“I think it’s important to know how to eat properly,” Kloosterman said.

She said students especially need to know etiquette for the future when they go on interviews and meet new people.

“Not everyone grows up in that environment,” she said. “I grew up on TV dinners.”

Students were able to ask Goehler questions about etiquette throughout the evening.

The first part of the five-course meal included harvest soup, tomato stack salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette and sorbet with mint leaf. Goehler said the sorbet is to clean the palette so people can enjoy the rest of the meal.

After the main course of beef with B‚arnaise Sauce, saut‚ed escarole and smashed purple potatoes, servers poured sparkling Catawba grape juice, so everyone could make a toast.

Kloosterman was nervous about how the event was going to turn out, but she said she thought it went very well.

The event was free to all the residents who signed up. Kloosterman said she sent e-mails a week before the event and called everyone the night before. She said she thinks it was her “relentless hounding” that made the attendance successful.

Heather Haden, freshman fashion design major, said she came to the dinner to know the basics of proper dining because she will have to dine with potential clients in her field.

She said she will go to every Etiquette Dinner from now on.

“I thought it was a really good learning experience,” she said.

Haden said she liked the different kind of foods and was glad that Goehler was easy to approach with questions people are usually afraid to ask.

Haden, who is the health representative of Fletcher hall, said she was pleased with the healthy food choices.

“I tried everything,” she said. “It’s not like you’re paying to try something.”

Contact room and board reporter Noelle Pennyman at [email protected].