A good idea can be a powerful thing, especially when combined with tenacity, hard work, and teamwork. The six students of the Global Entrepreneurism class had all of these characteristics and a great idea: a food truck for the Chatham Hall community.
“With all the food trucks coming on campus, everyone was so excited, and we were too. We thought, ‘why bring all the trucks to campus when we can create our own?’” said Alexis Phan ’22.
What started as a question about how much it cost to bring food trucks to campus turned into a full-fledged business proposal. Led by Ms. Barksdale, Antonia Lofink '21, Quiana Rodriguez '21, Kala Saliu '21, Katie Spannaus '21, Taylor Xu '23, and Phan all spent months researching protocols, procedures, availability of food trucks, and much more in preparation for launching A Bite of the World (BOW).
BOW features different cuisines from different cultures each time it’s open. According to the students’ proposal, “this business presents students a weekend activity, volunteer opportunity to gain work experience, and a space to share their culture. Simultaneously, A Bite of the World will enhance Chatham Hall's goals and values.”
Throughout the planning process, the students pivoted a number of times, including from a food truck to a food cart when it was being sold locally.
“It was a journey to the food cart,” said Phan. “As entrepreneurs, pivoting is inevitable. We were searching for a food truck or food truck rental and couldn’t find any, so we thought about contingency plans of making a food truck simulation. But then after Spring Break, a miracle happened, and we found out about a food cart right here in Chatham!”
From there, students began the work of bringing the cart, and their business proposal, to life. They chose the first cuisine to feature, Mexican, with dishes courtesy of Dora Amezaga Mendoza '22, and recruited a number of volunteers to help prepare and run the cart.
“Our class divided up responsibilities,” said Saliu. “Some of us bought food and took care of the budgeting, others prepared and served the food and took care of operations, and others coordinated volunteers so that they all had roles. We also had a project manager, so we were all involved in some way on launch day.”
“I recruited student volunteers and got people excited about the launch and the food, so I was most excited to just bring the community together and into it. I couldn’t wait for everyone to be a part of it,” noted Spannaus.
After much preparation, the food cart finally came to life on April 18, and served up tacos al pastor, quesadillas, nachos, and more to eager students and faculty in front of Pruden Hall.
“I want to send a huge thank you to the volunteers and everyone who has supported us so far to bring our project into reality,” said Xu from Beijing, China, who had been unable to be on campus but was still a major contributor to the project.
Those interested in volunteering with A Bite of the World and/or becoming involved with its operations next year can reach out to any of the student leaders or Ms. Barksdale
. See more photos on the School's SmugMug