Members of the scholarship committee at the Beverwyck Retirement Community present awards to recipients, who also work as employees in the facility’s dining area.
Photo by Marcy Velte.
continued The young employees often play an important role in the lives of residents. They are more than just servers and kitchen staff, but a friendly face, a helping hand and an ear when one’s needed.
“It’s really like having a second family, between the staff and residents,” said Olivia Lupoli, a senior at Bethlehem Central High School who plans to attend Syracuse University in the fall. “I loved working with them and making them smile. It was very rewarding and I got a lot out of it.”
Lupoli, who has worked at the Beverwyck for two years, said the experience had made her realize how much she loves working with people.
Danielle Lang, another Bethlehem student and scholarship recipient, said her time at the Beverwyck helped her to learn several important life lessons. She is now more patient and has learned time management skills and how to better communicate with others.
“I don’t really think of it as work, but a place to come and meet new people,” said Lang, who has not yet decided where she will be attending college.
“There are some really interesting and compassionate people here,” she said.
Lang said the experience has taught her a lot about how she hopes to be treated as she grows older, adding how the job gave her a sense of perspective. “I would want to be around someone who takes me seriously, and who I know cares about what I have to say. I know what (the residents) want and what we try to provide.”
Lierheimer said the residents know the scholarship won’t make a huge dent in college costs, but they try to do what they can to help the future generation that’s been kind to them.
“Like the kids say, at least it will help pay for books, and that’s one expense that won’t come out of their own pockets,” she said.