Students in Duchess Park Secondary School’s leadership and entrepreneurship classes have been serving cafe beverages from behind the bar of Park Cafe.

Park Cafe is an entirely student-run endeavor located outside of the school’s library.

Students decide which roles they want to take, including scheduling, serving, finance, and ordering.

The idea is that students apply the skills they would normally be learning from a textbook in a real-life setting.

“We had a barista come in and teach us how to make the beverages,” explained one of the students, Justin Garon.

“Physical work, I would rather do this than work on paper.”

The excitement carried over to the teachers.

“It seems like every time we have had students working on it for the first time, they come back to me with all these new ideas of different things we could try out,”  said Brandon Frederick, the Entrepreneurship Teacher at Duchess Park.

“They are getting excited about it, it’s getting them to think, and ask more questions.”

Fredrick noted this was something he could have benefited from when he was in high school.

“It’s not something I personally had a chance to do as a student. It would have been something that I would have liked to do.”

The next semester will see the leadership students taking over the coffee cart.

The hope is the entrepreneurship class will be offered year-round next year, and give students more time to organize and eventually expand the coffee cart.