D’Youville’s Mission at Work in the Community


students and staff in the kitchen
I love Thanksgiving. It is perhaps one of my favorite holidays. Not just because I get three days off from school or that I get to eat delicious food – but for what the day stands for. Thanksgiving is a day set aside to give thanks for the abundance of blessings we have in this great country of ours. Most of us get to enjoy the luxuries of cars, clothes, food, roofs above our heads, and education without even having to think twice about it. Although it is human nature to always want more and more, I think it is important to take time on Thanksgiving (and every day) to be thankful. Even though this has been a crazy semester, there has been countless ways I have been blessed – everything from being able to start my fourth year of college to having family travel 18 hours to visit to having friends who offered to drive me to clinicals when I did not have a car for five weeks.

I believe one of the best ways to say “Thanks” is paying it forward and being a service to others. D’Youville College has the same mission“We honor our Catholic heritage and the spirit of St. Marguerite d’Youville by providing academic, social, spiritual, and professional development in programs that emphasize leadership and service. D’Youville teaches students to contribute to the world community by leading compassionate, productive and responsible lives. 

On November 8, the dietetics students and I had the opportunity to reach out to the residents of the Santa Maria Towers as part of our Quantity Food Preparation class (DTC 409L).

The Meal.

students preparing food

In the Quantity Food Preparation (DTC 409L) course, students gain experience in planning and coordinating quantity food production, including a Thanksgiving meal prepared for residents of the Santa Maria Towers (low income housing for seniors). The course is taught by Linda Mocny.

After hours of planning and preparation including creating order forms, production schedules, decorations, and food for 160 people, we had the pleasure to give the residents a home-cooked Thanksgiving meal. The meal was complete with turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, parsley-buttered carrots, tart cranberry relish, and pumpkin cake with (the best) cream cheese frosting.

The food turned out fantastic, but the best part was seeing faces light up when our servers delivered the meal and hearing their abundant appreciation as they left with full stomachs. It made all the hard work and running around worth it!

Once we were done at the Santa Maria Towers all that was left was cleaning, and of course, eating! (We’re dietetics majors, what do you expect?) All in all the day was successful and went off without a hitch – that is except for the missing spoodles!

Give Back.

This is just one of the opportunities D’Youville students have to give back to the community! Keep your eyes open for other ways to get involved and reach out this coming holiday season! Watch for e-mails and flyers around campus, or contact Campus Ministry for ideas.

Highlights of the Day.

Here are some photos from food preparation and the meal:

students weighing foodD'youville college students in the kitchenD'Youville students preparing foodRoom where food is servedD'Youvilel student serving breadbowl of fruitstudents serving foodstudents enjoying muffins and beveragesStudents making homemade frostingdecorations students baking a cakestudents serving carrots

What are some of your ideas to give back this coming holiday season? Is there a community project your D’Youville program or club would like others to know about? Let me know what you think!