Last Friday, April 5 Dickinson said farewell to a beloved Dining Services employee who “showed that customer service is a universal language,” said Stephanie Doulgeris, retail operations manager in Dining Services.
George Koutsokostas, an employee of 10 years in Dining Services, announced he would retire on April 5. Koutsokostas worked in the retail department where he juggled shifts at the Biblio Café, the Quarry and the Juice Box.
Koutsokostas’s story extends far beyond the Dickinson community. According to Doulgeris, Koutsokostas immigrated from Greece over 40 years ago and has been a member of the Carlisle community ever since. “George has always cared for our community in Carlisle and here at Dickinson with a big smile and a high five,” Doulgeris said.
Other staff in Dining Services shared their thoughts on Koutsokostas and his retirement. Sonya Harding, assistant director of dining services, said that Koutsokostas is “one of the most kind and caring colleagues.”
On Tuesday, March 26, Dining Services employees threw Koutsokostas a surprise retirement party, where he shared “his appreciation for [the] many years and friends he [has] made at Dining Services,” Harding said, along with “how much he will miss his colleagues and the students.”
Koutsokostas said his favorite part about working in Dining Services was interacting with the students. “You guys are awesome,” Koutsokostas said, “You make a big difference for this college. Academics is one thing and the other thing is you guys.”
Students who worked in Dining Services and those who did not reflected on Koutsokostas’s career at Dickinson.
Sadie Fowler ’22, a student supervisor for Dining Services’ retail department, said George is one of the most “friendly” and “kind-hearted” people. “He always has a big smile on his face and takes the time to get to know the students,” she said.
Berenice Marinquez ’21, who works at the Biblio, said she got to know George after working with him once a week during the fall semester, and described it as a “fun” environment. “He’s very particular about what he likes to be done at work, but he was a complete joy to be around,” Marinquez said. She explained how Koutsokostas interacted with every customer and made personal relationships with them. “He made everyone so happy and made them laugh,” Marinquez said, “He took an interest in you and remembered your [regular] order.” Marinquez said that she will miss Koutsokostas but hopes that “he is happy” in his retirement.
Giuseppe Collia ’20, who also worked with Koutsokostas in the Biblio, said he has been a “staple in people’s lives” and described him as “always bringing a smile to people’s faces as they ordered a coffee.”
Ellery Coleman ’22 said Koutsokosta’s “jokes and warmth were the best part of the [B]iblio.”
Shante Toledo ’21, said she liked to go to the Biblio and was “happy to see him [Koutoskosta].” “It was easy to talk to him,” Toledo said, “he always had a smile and I appreciated him being here.”
Although Dining services will miss Koutsokostas and his work, they are happy for his retirement. Harding said, “His [Koutsokostas] retirement is well deserved and thankfully he has promised to come back and visit campus as much as possible…”
For Koutsokosta’s retirement, he plans to travel back to Greece for a couple of years, lay on a beach and “reflect on all of the good memories,” he said.