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UC Riverside

Business and Administrative Services

May 2018

Dining Etiquette Dinner

15th Annual Etiquette Dinner

Helping Auxiliary Services' Student Leaders Prepare for the Future

On April 24, Dining, Hospitality, and Retail Services held its 15th annual Etiquette Dinner honoring Auxiliary Services student leaders who will be graduating soon. Wanting to provide students with leadership and life skills above and beyond their work experience, Susan Coffman, Dining Services director of Student Staff Programs, developed the program based on an industry conference session she attended held at Stanford University. "Our first dinner in 2003 was held in the Barn U-club and only had 10 students in attendance and 6 professional staff," Coffman said. "It has grown & evolved over the years and now includes multiple presenters, tips on interview attire, preparing your resume, nailing the interview and of course, business dinner etiquette," said Coffman. Attendance at the event has grown to 80 - 100 guests including students and professional staff from all of Auxiliary Services.

Ebony Phillips, training and development analyst, Dining, Hospitality & Retail Services, was responsible for planning the dinner and program this year. Phillips planned the dinner based on a story-line where students had been invited to an interview that had a dinner component for the most promising candidates. The evening began with a formal standing reception and participants were treated to a four-course meal. The menu, created by Dining Services Chefs and Executive Chefs, was designed to be a little challenging to eat: Classic French with a Modern Twist.
Students learned about dining etiquette as they moved through the evening's program, including appropriate use of utensils, plating, table manners, and conversation.  Each time dining etiquette was discussed, a new course was introduced. Students also learned from guest speakers about interviews, professional attire, and networking. Advice was given on giving a proper handshake and communication etiquette to include telephone, text, email, and Skype.

During program breaks, professional staff were directed to have conversations with students at their tables exploring situations that could come up at an interview dinner such as: What should you do at dinner if your cell phone buzzes? What should you do if you drop your fork and it bounces across the floor? Is it appropriate to ask for a "to go" box? Who should pay the tab and how should you handle it? Prompts also included questions such as, how did someone where you work inspire you, creating deeper conversations.

Following the etiquette portion of the event, motivational speaker and former Boston Red Sox player, Rex Crain addressed the students. Crain encouraged the students to be the best version of themselves and to not be afraid of it, to live their lives with purpose, and to inspire and help others.

Angie Navarro, a student leader who attended the event, said the dinner "feels like a personal gift from the people who are already our mentors. It's great knowing how dedicated staff are to students." The Etiquette Dinner "stressed the importance of what it means to be a professional among others who you may potentially work for someday, and is also a reminder of the real world that we are heading into," Navarro said.

Phillips said that, "in taking on this tradition, I had big shoes to fill. I am grateful for all of my Dining colleagues and leadership who helped to plan and host this event. My hope is that we have honored our students and honored Coffman's legacy."

To learn more about the Etiquette Dinner program and how you can participate, contact Ebony Phillips.

Exciting Events, Initiatives, and Resources

OE Showcase

2018 Organizational Excellence Showcase

UCR Organizational Excellence: Creating a culture that enables and inspires all members of the UCR community to collaborate and innovate

Over 400 students, staff, and faculty attended the 2nd annual OE Showcase on Friday, April 30. Groups from the School of Medicine, Healthy Campus Initiative, Seeds of Change, Dining, Hospitality & Retail Services, Information Technology Solutions, UCR Child Studies - Department of Psychology, University Advancement, and Student Affairs Residential Life presented the results of their collaborative and innovative efforts for improving processes and best practices at UCR. Guests enjoyed free Starbucks iced-coffees and Moo Moo truck ice cream while exploring creative exhibits and presentations of the groups' projects, which included:
  • Lean Supply Cost Review
  • Lean Thinking to Streamline Requests
  • Redefining Customer Support
  • Centralizing and Streamlining Child Studies Recruitment  
  • Integrating Health and Well-Being into all Aspects of UCR
  • Residential Life Identity and Team Development
  • Re-imagining Faculty Workshops
  • Streamlining Academic Engagement Instructional Design Process
  • Collecting Real Time Guest and Client Feedback
  • Dining Excellence: People - Intentional and Streamlined Onboarding; Processes - Creating and Promoting a Proactive and Positive Safety Culture; Resources - Increasing Group Purchasing Power; and, Guest Services - 10/5 Rule for Guest Interaction
80 staff members were recognized by the Chancellor, Provost, and VC Coley for completing the Organizational Excellence Bronze Certificate Program. To earn a Bronze Certificate, participants have successfully completed the following introductory courses providing them with the fundamental concepts of OE and ensuring that campus change makers share a common framework and language in approaching campus initiatives: Collaborative Leadership; Leaders at Change; Project Management; and, LEAN Forward. Additionally, several staff members who earned their bronze level certificates also took additional training to become certified facilitators so that they can teach the bronze-level classes to others on campus. To date, nearly 400 staff members have completed at least one course in the OE Certificate program. If you are interested in earning an OE Bronze Certificate, upcoming courses can be found here: Bronze Certificate courses. Please email the Organizational Excellence team should you have questions about the program or to get involved with OE efforts on campus.


R'Professional Career Closet

R'Professional Career Closet

Help a student in need succeed!

Do you have professional clothing that no longer fits or has been hanging in your closet unworn for a while? Please consider donating it to R’Professional Career Closet. Your clothing will professionally prepare our students for the workforce. R'Professional Career Closet is a collaborative partnership between the Career Center and ASUCR to assist students with professionalism and career readiness.  "Since the store opened with a soft launch on April 2, there have been 236 unique students that have visited and 248 items gifted," said Linda LaTendresse, associate director of Employer Relations and Recruiting at the Career Center.

"We decided to adopt a professional career closet as a Career Center initiative after receiving feedback from employers that our students aren't always dressed as professionally as students coming from other colleges with whom they are competing for the same internships and career opportunities," LaTendresse said. "R'Professional Career Closet will prepare UCR students to have appropriate wear for career fairs, professional networking events, and interviews." Students also receive information about career readiness and professionalism in the work place when they visit the store.

To donate your gently used professional attire, you may drop off items during store hours at the Bear’s Den (HUB 105): Monday - Thursday 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. through June 14. You can also make arrangements with the Career Center for cardboard donation boxes for clothing drives, to make donations throughout the summer, and to meet at your vehicle to transfer large donations. Contact the Career Center at or 951-827-3631.

Ideas for donation:

  • Two-piece suits
  • Jackets and blazers
  • Blouses and dress shirts
  • Dress pants and skirts
  • Business dresses

Clothing should be:

  • clean
  • free of tears or stains
  • ready to wear
  • good to excellent quality
  • purchased within the last five (5) years and/or current with fashion.
For women, the closet currently needs blouses and for men, all clothing items in a variety of sizes. Larger sizes can be tailored to fit. For both men and women, business suits are needed. R'Professional Career Closet currently partners with The Mustard Seed Project, a faith-based student club selected by ASUCR that serves the local homeless community, for clothing donations that aren't deemed interview attire. Please note that R'Professional Career Closet does not have funds to cover the cost of washing or dry-cleaning clothing, so please be sure all items have been laundered prior to donation.

Yadira Tapia and Jackie Zabala who are currently organizing a clothing drive in the Vice Chancellor's office said, "we believe this initiative is a great opportunity for staff to personally contribute towards the success and future of our students. A simple donation could impact our students’ ability to secure a job, which could have a lasting impact on their lives and on the lives of their families."



Vice Chancellor’s Message

Ron Coley

Dear BAS Colleagues,

Thank you to all who participated in the Staff Assembly Community Partner Fair and the Organizational Excellence Showcase. I am particularly proud of the ways BAS members continue to strive for excellence through continuous improvement. Your OE Showcase entries and presentations are shining examples of innovation and collaboration; I enjoyed learning about the ways that you are making our campus a better place to work and learn for our entire community.

I am equally as excited and impressed every time I become aware of the many ways that BAS staff are invested in our students' success. Through special programs, internships, student employment, and leadership opportunities, we are equipping students with personal and professional skills they can use well beyond the classroom. Our role as business and administrative services professionals in a wide variety of functions allows us a unique opportunity to be able to do this. Our impacts are felt not only through the services we provide, but through our genuine heartfelt care for the well-being and success of our students which I see evidenced throughout our organization.

Finally, congratulations to all BAS staff who have achieved the OE Bronze Certification. To each of you who is among the 394 people who have taken at least one OE Bronze Certificate level course, I highly encourage you to continue on to complete your certification. For those of you who have completed your bronze-level certification, I hope that you will be moving on to the Silver tier and taking a deeper dive into the theories and practices of Organizational Excellence. 

As always, I welcome and invite your comments, ideas, and feedback. Please send your suggestions to

Thank you for your continued commitment to excellence.

Best regards,

Ron T. Coley
Vice Chancellor
Business and Administrative Services


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Campus Information Department Information Other Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521

Tel: (951) 827-1012

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