Boilers & Beyond – Abby Bowman

Abby is from Lafayette, Indiana and graduated Purdue University with a degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management. She has returned to Purdue and is currently the Dining Supervisor for the All American Dining Room!

It must be weird to be back at Purdue and not be a student for you! How long have you worked in the All American Dining Room?

It was a year in August so I’ve worked here when we were the Athletic Dining Room.

How has the All American Dining Room changed from the Athletic Dining Room?

We have the same structure of serving dinner from Monday through Thursday, but we’ve completely changed our menu. We use to have very strict dietary restrictions for Purdue athletes and now we’re serving an all Italian menu. It’s also fun to now be serving everyone instead of our athletes as we get to see a variety of different people. 

Sounds like the change was a success! What do you do as a Dining Supervisor?

My main focus is helping student employees from the hiring process, delegating tasks, and more. I also help order food for prep and coordinate with the cooks.

What do you like the most from the All American Dining Room?

I really like how small we are. I get the chance to be more personal with student employees which gives our place a more family feeling. We also make everything from scratch so our food is always fresh and amazing!

Before you discovered those great qualities, what made you decide to work in the All American Dining Room?

I actually applied for a different position in University Residences, but then I was told by a family friend to apply for this supervisor position instead. I got placed in the Athletic Dining Room by chance and now I love it here!

Since Thanksgiving is this week, how are you celebrating?

I usually spend Thanksgiving with my dad’s family, which is spread out all over the U.S., and each year we choose a different relative’s house to go to and combine Thanksgiving and Christmas. We have a Secret Santa, eat good food, and have a lot of fun! We’re heading out to Nebraska this year.

Man, getting to combine two holidays must be amazing! What’s your favorite Thanksgiving food?

Corn Casserole, which might be an odd choice but I love it.

How about least favorite?

I’m not a big stuffing fan.

Besides Thanksgiving, what are you most excited for this winter?

Christmastime is my favorite, I can’t wait to spend time with family. We have this tradition of going to the Art Museum at Newfields to see the light display in the botanical garden every year so I’m excited for that!

Alright last question, what event or person would you say has impacted you the most?

There are so many. I’d have to say the person that has impacted me the most is my manager, Ashley. When I first started here I didn’t really know what I wanted to do but Ashley helped shape me into a better leader and gain more confidence. She helped me feel like I belonged here at Purdue. She’s also always available for me to talk to and she an amazing listener that helps me consider my ideas. 

We’re glad Purdue has helped you as a student and now! Thank you Abby for sitting down with us and the amazing work you do! Have a great Thanksgiving too!

Okay Boilermakers, some of you may be home already and some you are probably wishing to be home, but don’t worry, we’re so close to Thanksgiving Break! Let’s knock out today and tomorrow before stuffing ourselves.


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