Teachers love the Pritzker Perk

Bryan Williams and Francinne Fotopoulos enjoy their Pritzker Perk beverages. Photocredit: Emily Gonzalez

By Emily Gonzalez ’21

The Pritzker Perk began on March 29 as teachers organized a student led coffee shop at Pritzker in order to restart the Pritzker Garden.

As several Pritzker teachers are involved with the organization Pilot Light – where teachers are able to incorporate food into their lessons, which both World History teachers Charles Rosentel and Bryan Williams have done –  they were to work collectively on a project. Rosentel explained, “Our first thought was, what if we grow herbs to make tea and we have a tea shop for students?”, but due to regulations preventing teachers to give homemade food and beverages to students, it wouldn’t be allowed. Instead, they decided to have students make and deliver coffee/tea to teachers since regulations are different for teachers, as Rosentel explained.

Although Rosentel is involved with Pilot Light, he isn’t one of the head organizers of the Pritzker Perk; Learning Specialist Keadi Young and Learning Specialist Kaydee Wasserman are in charge. Young explained that the students from her Career and Life Planning class as well as her Life Science class directly run Pritzker Perk; they take in orders, make the drinks accordingly, and deliver the drinks to the corresponding teacher.

In order for Pritzker Perk to function smoothly, Young explained that there is a Google form sent out to teachers every Monday for them to place their orders. The options teachers can choose from are Coffee, Herb tea, and Black tea with the option to add cream, almond milk, sugar, or honey.

Pritzker Perk was developed with the goal of funding the Pritzker Garden, which is run by Learning Specialist Shaun Bruce. Currently, all the materials used are store bought, but with the “money raised [through Pritzker Perk], [it] goes to purchase needs for the Pritzker Garden” as Young explained.

Because the students in Young’s Career and Life Planning class are involved, they are able to take skills from their involvement with Pritzker Perk; they are able to develop work skills and they learn how to run a business. For example, Julio Acevedo, a junior involved with Pritzker Perk, explained that he’s in charge of “[writing] the teachers names who ordered and what they want in their coffee or tea.” He described this process by explaining, “I write on the bottom of the cups [what additions to their beverages teachers would like]; for example, the [marking] for cream and sugar is “CS,” so if a teacher orders coffee with cream and sugar the [marking] for that is “CMS.” Through this experience, Acevedo explained that Pritzker Perk allows him to bring smiles to teacher’s faces and that’s something he really enjoys.

By next year, Pritzker Perk hopes to be able to make their own plant based teas that come from the Garden.

Pritzker Perk delivers to teachers every Thursday during first period. The students who deliver alternate each week between both of Young’s classes. Each cup of coffee or tea is $2.