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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Banquet honors work of custodial staff

 
 

Amid the music, food and dancing, hosts of the annual Big Banquet attempted to convey gratitude for custodians on campus – something organizers say students should consider more in their day-to-day lives.
This year’s Big Banquet, hosted by the freshman leadership organization Fish Aides, was the largest yet, with 565 custodians invited.
In addressing the banquet attendees, student body president Reid Joseph said he could not imagine another group on campus that more embodies the A&M value of selfless service than custodians.
“What would this University look like without this group after one day, or what would this University look like after one week? It would not be a nice sight,” Joseph said. “We are so appreciative of what you do on a daily basis. You make this University what it is and are truly a part of the Aggie family.”
While the event was hosted by Fish Aides, Garrett Notzon, co-director of the Big Banquet and freshman business honors major, said participation in the event is open to everyone.
“It’s not just Fish Aides, it’s something that we are looking forward to seeing is this expanding to the entire student body,” Notzon said. “Right now it’s open to the entire student body, there’s not much traction right now with it, but it’s still gaining. The Big Event has so many people, you just know what it is. Hopefully the Big Banquet will soon become another household name.”
Kai Jones, Fish Aides member and freshman general engineering major, said getting to know the custodians around him has given him a different perspective on the college experience.
“We come to college and we think it’s hard,” Jones said. “We expect certain amenities like having a clean MSC and dorm room and we all expect this to be the norm. Without custodians, our life would really be chaos.”
Erin Youngblood, Fish Aides member and Blinn Team student, said the Big Banquet is a means for students to serve custodians for once.
“They do so much for us, and you know college kids, we aren’t the cleanest,” Youngblood said. “So sometimes we can be not as nice to them as we should be to them, so today is when we get to serve them.”
Despite this day of service, Jones said there is room for improvement across campus and that there are easy, everyday ways students can show appreciation for this hard working segment of campus.
“A lot of people in my dorm will leave trash in the hallways,” Jones said. “It’s their job to clean up, but not to that extent. We’re not pigs, be respectful. We would never do that back home, so why do it here?”
Youngblood said showing appreciation can be as easy as striking up a conversation with custodians.
“Just strike up conversation with them,” Youngblood said. “If you see them taking out trash, just ask ‘Hey, what’s your name? Do you have a free minute? How’s your day?’ Really get to know your custodians. I know some people [at the banquet] have met and really love their custodians. They have a great relationship with them, they recognize them everywhere.”

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