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Throwback Thursday

A Periodic Tale of Departmental Lore (Part 11)

Written by David Lapakko 

Senior Breakfast: the demise of fine dining for seniors

As we head down the home stretch toward commencement, I regret to say that our graduating seniors will not be able to partake in what was an annual event at Augsburg for many years: the Senior Breakfast.


The Senior Breakfast was a way to acknowledge and congratulate all of our graduates, and it was always on the last Friday of spring semester.  It was quite a fancy event!  Students and faculty had to RSVP for it, and the dining service pulled out all the stops, with classy decorative table settings, real tablecloths, fine china, cloth napkins, attentive waitstaff, and pretty sumptuous food.  There was even live music–often something like a student jazz ensemble.  Overall, anyone attending the event couldn’t help but feel a little pampered.


If all of this is true, why don’t we still have a Senior Breakfast?  I cannot profess to know all the reasons, but one noteworthy aspect of the event was that it was always scheduled to start at  (ugh) 7:00 a.m.  For faculty, that probably meant getting out of bed at 5:30 or 6:00 a.m. at the end of one of the most hectic weeks of the term!  Then, because Augsburg did not want any attendees to miss their first class on that Friday, the Senior Breakfast ended at 8:00 sharp, meaning that everything had to be smushed into 60 minutes.  Therefore, it did not feel very leisurely, especially since there were even a couple commemorative speeches that needed to be squeezed in.  Finally, back to that live music: it was a nice thought, but it was also often quite loud–so much so that it was difficult to have any sort of decent conversation at your table.  It was demoralizing to be drowned out by the amplified renderings of Herbie Hancock or Miles Davis for a full thirty minutes.  So, in the end, the Senior Breakfast often felt rushed, noisy, and not worth the effort that it took to get to campus by the ungodly hour of 7:00.  And eventually, some years ago it was permanently shelved.


Yes, there are still other celebratory events on campus at the close of spring semester, but the Senior Breakfast represented a noble striving for elegance.  That said, very few of us miss dragging our tails in the door at the crack of dawn!  Please pass the Froot Loops.