PSU students learn dining etiquette - KOAM TV 7

PSU students learn dining etiquette


Pittsburg State University hosted its student etiquette dinner, a semester event that teaches young professionals the basics of proper manners in a professional meal setting.

"Most employers these days have some sort of meal involved in an interview," said Mindy Cloninger of PSU career services. "It may just be coffee and donuts, but there's some kind of food because that's our culture. And so it's really important for students to feel comfortable in these situations."

Cloninger says the dinner gives students the tools to present their best selves. A viable reason given today's competitive culture.

"These interactions that you make with people," said PSU student Mitchell Hucke. "These first impressions are what really count.

"I'm going to be having dinner with our [company] president when I graduate, so hopefully I can learn something to not embarrass myself," said PSU senior Matt Brooks.

The dinner covers the spectrum, from a three-course meal, to proper conversation. Top tips include following the lead of your host, putting your napkin on your lap, silencing your cell phone and ordering simple dishes.

"We all know that spaghetti or ribs or something can be messy," said Cloninger.

"And with every do, there is a don't. Including no elbows on the table. No chewing with your mouth open, and no racing. Eat slowly and carefully.

But with all elements, Brad Hodson, vice president of university advancement at PSU, says one of the most important takeaways is to find an ease and enjoy yourself.

"We're not trying to turn them into southern belles or super gentlemen," said Hodson. "We're trying to turn them into folks that understand the basics of a three-course meal and feel comfortable participating in that.

More etiquette tips include:

Do not wear a hat to the table

Allow your boss (the host) to carry the conversation

Dress in a professional manner

Do not order the most expensive item on the menu

Allow your host to order first

Eat at a mindful, slow pace



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