By SCOTT AUST
Director of Communications
On Thursday, Garden City Community College celebrated the opening of the Broncbuster Coffee Shop on campus with a ribbon cutting by the Garden City Area Chamber of Commerce.
Located between the bookstore and cafeteria at the Beth Tedrow Student Center, the Broncbuster Coffee Shop is an extension of Garden City High School’s Buffalo Coffee Shop and will provide the same service.
According to a Garden City Public Schools news release, in addition to the main location, students will take two coffee cart stations to two different buildings on the GCCC campus and sell coffee, lemonade, hot chocolate, cold coffee and pre-packaged snacks.
“We’re so happy to be here. It’s really an amazing opportunity,” Layla Lappin, special education instructor, said during Thursday’s ribbon cutting. “Today was our first day of selling with freshman orientation. I know we were all a little overwhelmed with the number of kids coming in, but it went really well. This is an amazing group of students. This is about them. I’m really happy for this opportunity.”
Lappin said the Broncbuster Coffee Shop is a transition to work program for life skills students at the high school that provides a place to practice new learned skills for students 18 to 21 years old. Seven students are enrolled in the program with a teacher and para-professional, according to Garden City Public Schools. The overall goal is for students to become employed.
“We are teaching social skills, vocational skills,” Lappin said. “We started with the coffee shop at the high school, which has been immensely successful. We knew this would be an amazing opportunity to extend that because a lot of our kids have those skills already.”
Lappin said the college has been a tremendous partner in giving the program exposure and allowing it to locate in a space on campus.
GCCC President Ryan Ruda credited Board of Trustees chairman Dr. Blake Wasinger with initiating conversations with the high school about extending the high school program to the college. Ruda said there have been a lot of conversations administratively about how to bring a coffee shop to campus and the momentum grew over the past semester.
“It’s absolutely our honor, our pleasure, to have this collaboration and partnership,” Ruda said. “This has worked out beautifully. It’s a great collaboration to have with USD 457. I can personally attest, I had two cups of coffee. These guys have worked very hard. It’s great coffee, and I look forward to the partnership.”
Broncbuster Coffee Shop’s hours are 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday.