Tiger’s Den workers building work place skills

Student workers in the Tiger’s Den have been serving, counting, delivering and communicating for the past four years as they work in a real environment on a team.

“My favorite part is working with my peers. It’s like a family,” sophomore Kendall Maslak said.

With support from the students and staff, the student workers have grown in communication and skills while serving the students and staff tasty treats and beverages in the morning hours of school.

“The importance of the students working in the Tiger’s Den is to learn good job skills: social skills, money counting and just working with the public,” paraeducator John Bachman said.

These skills that are learned in the Tiger’s Den are then translated to future job options and after high school experiences.

“Well, this is food, and if they don’t want to deal with food, then they can at least see what it is like dealing with food, people and customers to see if its an avenue if they want to take or not,” Bachman said.

Senior Jordan Schroeder said the skills that he has learned working in the Tiger’s Den have helped him build possible future interests.

“I’ve learned politeness and remembering people’s orders and deliveries. It gets me to want to work at Cup of Joe or another coffee shop environment,” Schroeder said. “The girl back there normally gets half hot chocolate half coffee with two squirts of raspberry, and then there’s another customer that comes and always gets a hazelnut iced coffee. The nurse always gets a French vanilla.”

These students are unpaid and use open periods to do deliveries and serve students. Proceeds go to different clubs and groups around the school, along with getting the materials to keep the Tiger’s Den running.

“We make about $80-$120 per week,” paraeducator Marcia Mercurio said.

With this money, many groups are supported throughout the school, and the experience that the students receive is priceless; however, in the past few years, there has been a decrease in the Tiger’s Den sales.

“We are seeing a lot more student involvement, but this year it seems that a lot less sales are happening because of the snack room being open downstairs. I don’t know if that is a conflicting interest or what,”  Bachman said.

Only time will tell the fate of the Tiger’s Den.

“It depends on what happens to the food regulations, the food school laws, and if those all change or go away. Then we will have a whole new thing up here. Better. We will just have to wait and see.”

Until then, the Tiger’s Den workers will be creating a community environment throughout the school while paying it back to the students.

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