BY: JENNIFER WITTRUP, STUDENT LIFE CENTRE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
When I was offered the position of administrative assistant to the secondary Student Life Centre (SLC) and realized that my position would be the first face students would see upon entering, I knew that I wanted to do something special for the first week of school.
Naturally, I turned to candy…the treat that passes the test of time!
Small, sweet, scrumptious. Minty or fruity. Few complain of flavour. Just having something sweet is all that really matters.
What started as a mere kind gesture to welcome students back to school has turned into a regular occurrence that can turn into cries of lament if I have run out, or even if the candy jar has simply not been brought out for the day!
“Finally! It has been years since you have had candy out!” was a phrase just recently heard after three days without candy! I knew I was bordering on mass revolt, so I brought in some heart shaped lollipops for Valentine’s while I waited for my candy order to come in.
Phew. Crisis averted.
Making Your Day
This one small little bundle of sugary goodness can flip someone’s day around. It can give them the boost they need to carry on and tackle that next class. It can make amends between friends or build friendships as one passes it out the door to the one waiting in the hall. It can be an ice breaker to talking about seeing Mr. Bravo, or admitting they are struggling in a course. It can simply bring a smile to someone’s face that inevitably brings a smile to mine.
And for the record…teachers come in almost as much as students to get that morsel of motivation.
This simple bowl of candy has also afforded me the opportunity to chat with students in a way that I don’t get to do as much anymore, now that I am not in the classroom working as an educational assistant. I have even sometimes stopped students from simply grabbing to satisfy their sweet tooth and asked them to say, “Hi.”
Over time, I have built a connection with students that now blesses me with more smiles and random conversations than I would normally have received. The most common conversation, interestingly— “what kind of fruit is this one?” “Is it strawberry or apple?” “Cranberries or pomegranates?” Yes, they are not necessarily the conversations of scholars and world-changers—on the outset—but who’s to say what one innocent conversation of candy flavour might start? If nothing else, perhaps those students will get back to class more energized to embrace their latest project with gusto!
Or they will simply make the world a sweeter place by sharing the smile that comes from a small scrumptious candy.
The Student Life Centre—changing the world, one candy at a time!