Student Jobs: Denny’s

Monika Wisner, author

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Although being a student is a full time commitment, a lot of us have other jobs outside of school.

To start off this weekly segment, I chose to talk about my job at Denny’s.

Where do you work?

I work at the Denny’s in Eldersburg.

Do you enjoy working there? Why?

I really like it there. The people I work with are generally older people, and they’ve kind of taken me in. The diner has a real family feel to it and we bond over problematic customers, or “guests” as management prefers us to call them, and it doesn’t really feel like work.

What does your job entail? What do you actually do?

My job title is “host” which includes seating and cashing out guests, but I also stock and fill out to-go orders, clean tables, get drinks, and pretty much whatever is needed to keep everybody happy and comfortable.

How is this job helping you prepare for your future?

Well, it is mainly helping me to fund my need for video equipment so that I can train myself better in the field of video production. The job itself has also helped me to grow more confident in talking to new people and I know how to work with them in order to keep them calm while I work out the issue when they get upset.

Do you have any specific story about working there?

There are so many. I had this manager who would be cooking, waiting tables, hosting with me, and still doing normal manager things all in one shift- granted, her shifts would be anywhere from 10 to 35 hours, but that’s what made her so remarkable. She also had a son that would come in with her husband occasionally, late in the day of course, and he would hide under empty tables by other kids and, by the time he left, he would have made 3 new friends.

Since it’s an old fashioned diner, we play company regulated “diner music” like Rock Around the Clock and some songs by Billy Joel, but the cooks can’t hear any of that while they’re back in the kitchen with all of the noise, and diner music isn’t really their thing anyway. I don’t know who does it but, whenever I work, I start out on the floor listening to some nice 60’s tunes then I pass through the doors to the back I’m hit with rock music like Papa Roach and Three Days Grace. It’s such a strange environment, but I think it’s the good kind of strange.

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Student Jobs: Denny’s