On Friday, April 29, students at The Baptist College of Florida in Graceville could be seen gathered around the gazebo taking photographs in their formal attire in preparation for the second annual “Evening of Class” formal dinner. The dinner was held in the BCF Wellness Center which was transformed into a formal dining venue featuring white table linens, crystal vases with roses and baby’s breath, and votive candles elegantly arranged on the tables.
This year, over 100 students and guests were in attendance for the formal evening. Students and those accompanying them entered the Wellness Center retrieving their place cards and arranging them on the table, while providing broad smiles as the camera captured memories at the photo booth. The evening began with the invocation and blessing from retired United States Navy Captain and BCF Vice President for Development Charles Parker. Students were served each course by faculty and staff members who were formally trained and dressed as waiters for the evening. Following completion of the salad, students were served the main course featuring entrée selections of either pork loin or chicken pasta. After everyone finished the main course, dessert and coffee was served as students enjoyed the special after dinner speaker, BCF President Thomas A. Kinchen. The Wellness Center was filled with appropriate laughter as Kinchen encouraged students to pursue individuality and dedication in sharing the Gospel.
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“I am genuinely thrilled about the outcome of the formal,” stated event coordinator and Baptist Collegiate Ministries Director Jonah Powers. “I am thankful that students took the time to learn and implement the proper formal etiquette protocols, as these skills will be beneficial in their future.”
As students look forward to next year’s formal and the etiquette classes leading up to the event, there is little doubt that the formal dinners are a huge success with the students and servers. According to several students, the skills learned from the formal evening and the etiquette classes have already proven useful in their personal lives, with one student saying that he used the knowledge obtained through the BCF etiquette instruction on three separate occasions over the past year.
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