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Visitors Feast on Data, Delectables During Hospitality Capstones

Students in hospitality majors presented a variety of eye-catching senior projects across campus on the final day of the Spring 2018 semester. The annual Grand Pastry Buffet, a capstone project that requires baking and pastry arts students to combine the skills they’ve learned throughout their associate-degree careers, was held in the Thompson Professional Development Center for high school students who are interested in hospitality careers. The high schoolers’ day started with a visit to the Klump Academic Center Auditorium, where they received an overview of the program and listened to research presentations by senior students pursuing bachelor’s degrees in culinary arts and systems. They also toured campus and hospitality labs and ate lunch in Le Jeune Chef Restaurant. Also culminating the semester was a display of final projects by students in the Cakes and Decorations course in the Madigan Library.

– Photos by Jennifer A. Cline, writer/magazine editor

A cake by Alexis L. Hunter, of Hughesville, received second-place honors from judges.
A cake by Alexis L. Hunter, of Hughesville, received second-place honors from judges.

Brian D. Walton, assistant dean of business and hospitality, addresses high school students in the ACC Auditorium.
Brian D. Walton, assistant dean of business and hospitality, addresses high school students in the ACC Auditorium.

Eliza B. Cook, of Towanda, presents her research into the eating habits of students in the Towanda Area School District. She gathered data on whether students were eating the healthy lunch options they were being offered and suggested tactics to increase students’ healthy choices.
Eliza B. Cook, of Towanda, presents her research into the eating habits of students in the Towanda Area School District. She gathered data on whether students were eating the healthy lunch options they were being offered and suggested tactics to increase students’ healthy choices.

Bridget M. Callahan, of Pottsville, illustrates a study of Lebanese Culture & Cuisine.
Bridget M. Callahan, of Pottsville, illustrates a study of Lebanese Culture & Cuisine.

William D. Benedetto, of Howard, shares his senior project findings on methods of food preservation.
William D. Benedetto, of Howard, shares his senior project findings on methods of food preservation.

Dylan H. Therrien, of Reading, presents research into the benefits of hydroponic, aquaponics and traditional soil gardening and farming.
Dylan H. Therrien, of Reading, presents research into the benefits of hydroponic, aquaponics and traditional soil gardening and farming.

The research of Magdalen C. Bennett, of Erie, includes an analysis of the nutrient density in a variety of organically grown vegetables versus their conventional counterparts.
The research of Magdalen C. Bennett, of Erie, includes an analysis of the nutrient density in a variety of organically grown vegetables versus their conventional counterparts.

Cody T. Knarr, of Williamsport, explains the truth behind the dates found on food packages.
Cody T. Knarr, of Williamsport, explains the truth behind the dates found on food packages.

David O. Spirache, of Reading, researched the origins and production of pizza.
David O. Spirache, of Reading, researched the origins and production of pizza.

Stephanie C. Myers, of Catawissa, studied food disposal and proposes that companies producing food for large events donate the leftover product to local food banks to reduce waste.
Stephanie C. Myers, of Catawissa, studied food disposal and proposes that companies producing food for large events donate the leftover product to local food banks to reduce waste.

For his senior project work, Paul J. Herceg, of Chalfont, researched the production and preservation of pasta.
For his senior project work, Paul J. Herceg, of Chalfont, researched the production and preservation of pasta.

The Grand Pastry Buffet offerings of Sarah A. Waclo, of York, include coffee cheesecake.
The Grand Pastry Buffet offerings of Sarah A. Waclo, of York, include coffee cheesecake.

The “tea”-themed buffet includes a savory roasted-carrot and feta tart by Linea M. Kelley, of Turtlepoint.
The “tea”-themed buffet includes a savory roasted-carrot and feta tart by Linea M. Kelley, of Turtlepoint.

A fresh fruit meringue cup by Rachel A. Henninger, of Bellefonte.
A fresh fruit meringue cup by Rachel A. Henninger, of Bellefonte.

Olivia M. Lunger’s sugar centerpiece. Lunger is from Elysburg.
Olivia M. Lunger’s sugar centerpiece. Lunger is from Elysburg.

Fire and ice combine for an eye-catching sugar sculpture by Amber Kreitzer, of Port Trevorton.
Fire and ice combine for an eye-catching sugar sculpture by Amber Kreitzer, of Port Trevorton.

Rainbow pastries and chocolate-dipped palmiers are offered by Maren A. Zaczkiewicz, of Williamsport.
Rainbow pastries and chocolate-dipped palmiers are offered by Maren A. Zaczkiewicz, of Williamsport.

A colorful sugar sculpture by Bethany R. Taylor, of Moosic.
A colorful sugar sculpture by Bethany R. Taylor, of Moosic.

Nora E. Smith, of Centre Hall, offers cucumber roll-ups.
Nora E. Smith, of Centre Hall, offers cucumber roll-ups.

Chocolate artistry by Jacqueline R. Dull, of Mohnton.
Chocolate artistry by Jacqueline R. Dull, of Mohnton.

A tasty selection by Maria E. Berrios, of Bethlehem, includes pineapple upside down cakes, crème brûlée (waiting to be “brûléed”-to-order), raspberry-lemon macarons and passion fruit truffles.
A tasty selection by Maria E. Berrios, of Bethlehem, includes pineapple upside down cakes, crème brûlée (waiting to be “brûléed”-to-order), raspberry-lemon macarons and passion fruit truffles.

Taylor M. Bickhart’s chocolate sculpture. Bickhart is from Middleburg.
Taylor M. Bickhart’s chocolate sculpture. Bickhart is from Middleburg.

Lotus blooms adorn a chocolate work by Erica L. Breski, of Harrisburg.
Lotus blooms adorn a chocolate work by Erica L. Breski, of Harrisburg.

Carrie M. Phillips’ deconstructed tiramisu. Phillips is from Trout Run.
Carrie M. Phillips’ deconstructed tiramisu. Phillips is from Trout Run.

Students in the Pastry Food Show and Buffet Presentation Concepts course, which presents the Grand Pastry Buffet, take a pre-event photo with two of their faculty members: Chef Charles R. Niedermyer, (left) and Chef Todd M. Keeley, instructors of baking and pastry arts/culinary arts.
Students in the Pastry Food Show and Buffet Presentation Concepts course, which presents the Grand Pastry Buffet, take a pre-event photo with two of their faculty members: Chef Charles R. Niedermyer, (left) and Chef Todd M. Keeley, instructors of baking and pastry arts/culinary arts.

Somer A. Safford’s chocolate work of art. Safford is from Port Allegany.
Somer A. Safford’s chocolate work of art. Safford is from Port Allegany.

As crowds gather, Kelley arranges utensils near her section of the buffet.
As crowds gather, Kelley arranges utensils near her section of the buffet.

Alyssa L. Casler’s cake was honored by judges. She is from Barnesville.
Alyssa L. Casler’s cake was honored by judges. She is from Barnesville.

Judges awarded third place to a cake by student Madeline J. Novack, of Selinsgrove.
Judges awarded third place to a cake by student Madeline J. Novack, of Selinsgrove.

A cake by Cody T. Knarr, of Williamsport, took first place.
A cake by Cody T. Knarr, of Williamsport, took first place.

A colorful display of cakes in the library is among end-of-semester work by hospitality students.
A colorful display of cakes in the library is among end-of-semester work by hospitality students.

Cynthia R. Setzer, of Port Allegany, offers a bite-sized selection of chai tiger truffles, raspberry glace and lemon meringue pie.
Cynthia R. Setzer, of Port Allegany, offers a bite-sized selection of chai tiger truffles, raspberry glace and lemon meringue pie.