What are you passionate about? This is not really a question that is commonly asked, but more one that is more rhetorical. After speaking with senior Restaurant and Foodservice Management major and Business Administration minor, Miranda Keefe, she explained that you can be passionate about more than one concept or life skill. You can’t go through life without any experience, especially if you want to create a name for yourself. By adding in a little bit of personality, passion, and practice a person can get far, especially when it comes down to starting on your career path and Keefe is on the right trail!
Baking has always been a hobby and passion for Keefe. During her time in high school, she was enrolled in culinary school, which allowed her to complete high school as well as enjoy something that she likes participating in. From there she found herself applying to DelVal because of the merit scholarship she received as well as the fact that they had a well-known food science department and program. Keefe has learned numerous new key concepts from her classes like Food Distribution, Food, Culture, and Cuisine, and even Supervision and Management. What is truly amazing is that she can apply the skills she learned in classes and labs to the real world. However, on top of the knowledge gained from classes, one piece of advice that Keefe mentioned that should be taken into account is “the more hands-on experience the better”, which luckily is something every DelVal student will receive due to the Experience360 Program.
In her last year before graduating this coming May 2022, Keefe has completed two internships through the E360 program to fulfill her requirement. Her final internship at Le Macaron French Pastries in Doylestown is where she made a positive impact on the business and herself. She used her hardworking mindset, business knowledge, and determination to get her to where she is now; a manager for that specific location. She explained that her internship “started [her] career on the management side of the food industry”, and now she is thinking of potentially pursuing this path. Additionally, she learned professional communication skills through her internship, as well as being a member (Co-Food Executive) of the A-Day committee. A-Day is a three-day student run fair that takes place on DelVal’s campus. From her experience so far in A-Day, Keefe has communicated professionally with potential food vendors, DelVal staff and faculty, and has even learned how to format and send out professional contracts. Students can earn .5 credits for being involved with A-Day, which can be put towards E360. Being a member of the DelVal community gives students the chance to learn what they are passionate about and opportunities to establish who they are and want to be.
Besides her academics and professional experiences, Keefe is an extremely well-rounded individual. She is involved in numerous clubs and organizations on campus like A-Day, Food Industry Club, Impact Club, Delta Tau Alpha (a national agricultural honor society), and FeelGood. When she is not managing Le Macaron French Pastries in town or attending club meetings, she enjoys baking, kicking around a soccer ball, and just enjoying the outdoors. One of the many reasons she loves DelVal is because the campus is so green and the agriculture emphasis. It would be pretty impossible to create food without growing the ingredients… right? One tip that Keefe wants all students to know is that you need to create a balance between school and your social life. While keeping your grades up is important, if you don’t give yourself a break it can cause a negative effect on your schoolwork. With her time at DelVal, she has developed friendships that she sees lasting a lifetime and has made connections through networking with individuals in her department, DelVal alumni, and on LinkedIn that have helped her to get to where she is now and where she may want to go in the future.
People can change their minds about what they want to do in the future; Keefe certainly has. Through her experiences inside and outside of the classroom, she has figured out her strengths and weaknesses, her passions, and what she may want to do after graduating. Currently, she plans to work in food safety auditing, quality assurance, or conducting health inspections in food facilities. With her combined background knowledge and personal experience, Keefe has plenty of potential options for what she will do after her time at Delaware Valley University.
Written by: Brooke Farber