Coffee shop arriving soon to Commons area

Abby Warner, Photographer & Web Journalist

   It has been a dream of special education teacher Judith Osterberg to see a coffee shop built in Northwest High School. She hopes this vision will soon come, and her students can experience employment at the shop. 

   Although recent construction has focused on the new clothing closet, the administration expects the new coffee shop production to begin soon. Osterberg and her students hope the shop will be completed by late April or early May.

   The plan is to start with opening hours during lunch and possibly Focus Time every Friday, during which both students and staff will have the option to purchase coffee. 

    The shop employees will consist of the high school’s cognitively impaired (CI) students in Mrs. Osterberg’s class. The CI students have previous experience at The Table Coffee House, so they plan to extend their experience here in their own building.

   The plan is also to collaborate with general education business students who work with high school teacher Randi Watts to allow those students an opportunity to work. It will also offer them the chance to gain employability experience on how to run a business. 

   Even though Osterberg has pursued this for a while, she has had support from many others like CI teacher Hadleigh Houghton and administrators Amanda Anspaugh, Scott Buchler, and Phil Sczykutowicz.

   Staff and students are all anticipating seeing these students become more involved. A portion of the curriculum is to prepare CI students to become employable in the future and to understand how to function in a volunteer position.

    “I think it will be a great learning experience for CI with hands-on training and experience,” said Sczykutowicz. 

   Also, the students’ excitement continues to grow. Junior Hanna Chambers is a student who plans to work as an employee of the coffee shop.

  “I want to learn to make different coffees, get to meet new people, and interact with more students. Maybe even learn a bit about how to do the job and use the different equipment,” said Chambers.

   There are hopes of hot cocoa for the chilly weather and smoothies to cool individuals down for Michigan’s overpowering summers. Many hopes, expectations, and fun-filled adventures await as the production of the shop continues.