Longtime school cafeteria worker serves students with kindness
Ernestine Moore is a beloved member of the Lee University campus.
She is the first face you see when you walk into the school cafeteria.
She has worked as a cashier there for 25 years, offering change and kindness to each person who comes through her line.
Moore, 85, is a treasure on campus. She is loved by students and staff.
“They just respond to her so well and I think they feel as if she’s part of their family. She’s this happy, consistent face that they see each day,” Jade Goss, who is employed by Sodexo, the same company that employs Moore, and works as the Catering Manager at Lee University, said.
“Your day is automatically brightened by her smile and just her warm embrace,” student Chmira Gilliam said.
Moore is always willing to share her wisdom with students. She is someone they often go to for advice.
“They ask me what I think is best for them, and I say to get your education because you can’t go on without it,” Moore told Channel 3.
Despite that friendly face and warm personality, students say the great-grandmother can get tough when she needs to.
“When I was a freshman, my roommate and I tried to sneak out with a couple of extra pieces of fruit. Let’s just say we did not attempt that again. She set us straight. She said one piece of fruit, and we never tried it again,” student Emily McConnell said.
Moore is so popular on campus, she has her own Instagram account. She’s been recognized with an outstanding service award and a Greek club made her an honorary member.
“We’re really lucky to have her, and we are thankful she is here,” Goss said.
Moore was hired as a cashier when she was 60 years old and says she didn’t dream she would still be working at the cafeteria.
“I liked it so well that I wanted to stay,” Moore said.
Right now, Moore has no plans of slowing down.
“Oh mercy, as long as I can drive my car here,” Moore laughed.
She plans to continue working and serving others each day with a smile.