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Students take professors to lunch

Jack Casey lunch

Jon Allen '14 with Jack Casey, part-time faculty member and WERS-FM general manager, and Eric Van Vlandren '90, who is an alumni board member of Phi Alpha Tau, of which Allen is president. The trio gathered as part of President Lee Pelton's initiative to have students take faculty members out to lunch. (Photo by Alexandra Bender '16)

President Lee Pelton has launched a new initiative that encourages students to take faculty members out to lunch as a way to build camaraderie.

“Meals bring people together. We want to encourage and support activities that increase student and faculty contact,” Pelton said. “We know that many of the students’ most transformational experiences come when interacting with faculty outside of the classroom walls.”

The program allows students one free meal credit on their campus identification cards to take a faculty member to lunch at the dining hall in the Little Building. The program is available to students regardless of whether they are enrolled in a meal plan.

“A lot of us have hectic schedules and this is a great way to meet up outside of office hours,” said Kate Lagreca ’14, who recently had lunch with Professor Thomas Cooper of the Visual and Media Arts Department. “It’s also a nice way to thank professors and mentors.”

Jon Allen ’14, president of the Phi Alpha Tau fraternity, recently dined with his former broadcasting instructor Jack Casey ’69, who is also general manager of Emerson’s WERS-FM and faculty supervisor of Allen’s fraternity.

“This lunch program gives Jon and me an opportunity to know each other and perhaps ask questions he may not have thought of in the classroom,” Casey said.

During their lunch, the two discussed the latest events on campus, Allen’s marketing classes, and his new position as president of the fraternity.

“I believe this presents a great opportunity to get to know the professors in a slightly more casual, one-on-one situation than what’s usually afforded,” Casey said. “I’ve mentioned to a few of my colleagues that I wish this had been in place when I was a student. There were a bunch of professors I’d love to have had lunch with.”

The program lasts through the spring 2013 semester.

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