A Family Legacy

Lebanon Valley College alumni working at Webstaurant

Students arrive at The Valley through various means: academic reputation, opportunity to conduct student-faculty research, athletics, beautiful facilities, friendly people, high school teachers, and coaches. Emily Hewitt Smith ’10, CFSP, vice president of content at the WebstaurantStore, transferred to LVC after a year at Harrisburg Area Community College through family connections: her mother, Susan Purgert Hewitt ’83, was an alumna, as was her sister, Kathryn “Katie” Hewitt McDermott ’08.

Once at LVC as an English major, Smith quickly immersed herself in the community, despite earning her bachelor’s degree in just three years. She was a Resident Assistant, member of the Student Programming Board, and student worker in the Registrar’s and Graduate & Professional Studies (GPS) offices.

While admiring Dr. Laura Eldred, former professor of English and current Associate Provost of undergraduate education, and considering a career in higher education, Smith is glad she went the business route. She joined the WebstaurantStore in customer solutions and worked part-time for three months before graduating.

Susie Greenawalt P’98, P’02, a longtime GPS administrator, helped lay the foundation for this career path.

“Susie was the most influential person to me as a young professional,” said Smith. “I clearly remember the day she had me unstuff envelopes, refold the papers, and restuff them because another student had not done it up to her standards. I learned that no matter the task, you should care what you do. I appreciate that she spent the extra time helping me develop skills I ultimately use every day in my profession.”

Smith figured the WebstaurantStore would be a gateway job but quickly fell in love with the company, even becoming a Certified Food Service Professional.

“I lucked out by starting my career at the WebstaurantStore,” noted Smith. “I fully intended to get my career started, then move onto another company after a few years. However, the personal and professional growth I experienced at the WebstaurantStore has kept me here for more than 12 years.”

Smith also has remained connected to her family alma mater.

“I have hired several LVC alumni and work with even more—it’s hard to believe we have more than 30 alumni between Clark and WebstaurantStore,” said Smith. “I’ve worked with the Breen Center staff to set up on-campus interviews and participated in several mock interviews. LVC is fortunate to have a great team in the Breen Center. They are passionate about their work and eager to have potential employers visit campus.”

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