Growing in Confidence

Staff member Kira at a Co-op Place Buffet

authored by Kira, Hospitality Worker at Co-op Place


The person that I was when I started my first job at 15 years old to the person I am now three years later, has come a long way with her confidence and abilities in the hospitality industry.

When I started working at Co-op Place, my role on the food and beverage team was making popcorn. At first, I was really excited about it but after the first few shifts, I got the courage to ask my manager, Adam if there was a more challenging role I could take on. I felt I had way more potential to offer than what making popcorn required. Adam agreed and moved me to the kitchen!

This job challenges me in new and exciting ways; gaining new knowledge in the kitchen, helping grow my social skills working as a team and driving my work ethic. Eventually I was also asked to be part of special events that Co-op Place and the Esplanade were hosting. I knew immediately that I had to say yes to these amazing opportunities that I never thought I was going to get at my age, especially considering it was my first job.

Without the experience I’ve gained with Co-op Place, I wouldn’t be able to serve and interact with customers the way I am now. Pre-game buffets are my favourite days, especially the themed ones. I love to see and interact with all the regulars on top of trying my hardest to make the newcomers feel welcome. On a Pre-Game Buffet day, I get to see the food go through every step, from prep and cooking to setting up and serving.

My 15-year-old self would not have been even close to being able to make simple meals let alone our more complex dishes, but because of this job I can now say I have a wide range of dishes I can cook. Quiche and Haupia are some of my all-time favourite dishes that I prepared myself that made me think, “Oh wait! I can actually cook!” Quiche is a savoury egg-based dish cooked within a tart pastry that we served with lots of other delicious treats last year at the Afternoon Tea at the Ewart-Duggan House. Haupia is the traditional Hawaiian dessert made with coconut milk we served this year at our Hawaiian Luau Pre-Game Buffets.

Taking a hospitality position at Co-op Place has given me more than just a job; it has given me opportunities to grow as a person, learn new skills and use my creativity in the kitchen.


Are you interested in a career in hospitality at Co-op Place? Visit the Careers page to check for openings!