By: Jacqueline O’Rourke
The Peak Creamery held the grand re-opening of their new location in Jean Donovan Hall, the first building in Christian Witness Commons on Thursday, Oct 25.
“Tonight definitely went a lot better than I thought it would. I think it was because of the strong marketing we did; we were really adamant about that. That definitely helped. Then, just word of mouth and having the windows open so people can look in helped bring in more people,” said senior Business Management major and one of the shop’s managers, Celina Pozzuto.
Thursday was not the first time The Peak has opened its doors at Sacred Heart University. Previously, it was located further down Park Ave inside of Angelo Roncalli Hall. “The old Roncalli location was smaller and it wasn’t as opening and welcoming as this is,” said Pozzuto.
The original location in Roncallli opened five years ago. “In 2013, we wanted to give students an opportunity to experience what it was like to run their own business. It would essentially be an academic lab of sorts for students to practice what they were learning in the classroom. Marketing students could create advertisements, research product pricing, hold promotions and collect and analyze data on our customers. Accounting students could do the books and inventory. Management students could oversee staffing and flow of the store. That was the idea,” said Sean Heffron, the current Executive Director of Student Success at Sacred Heart who advised and oversaw the Roncalli location when he held the position of the Director of Student Experience.
A few years later, The Peak is back with a new approach and location. “I think Christian Witness Commons is more of a central location for the business school, the main campus, where Roncalli was more separate from all that. More people can come over after classes versus going all the way up the hill to Roncalli,” said junior Business Management Major and manager Jill Wroth.
“The students found a more affordable product, changed some of the branding, and renamed themselves ‘The Peak,’” said Heffron.
Despite all the changes, the goal of The Peak still remains the same as when it first opened. “The greater point of The Peak is to offer our Welch College of Business students an opportunity to run a business on campus. While I am their advisor, they are in charge of making sure The Peak is profitable. The student managers handle everything a manager would: payroll, accounting, marketing, sales, hiring employees.” said Victoria Rosa-Garcia, The Peak’s current advisor and the Director of Welch Experience at Sacred Heart University’s Jack Welch College of Business.
The students working at The Peak are eager about this unique job opportunity.
“I like the convenience of working on campus. Also, working for an organization that is put on by the students, we are running our own show. I really like that idea versus working for someone else.” said Wroth.
The employees have their own personal aspirations for the success of this new venture. “I hope that we can grow our business to be bigger. We could start selling different things like t-shirts, even different types of food besides just ice cream. We could get more employees that will bring in more people. We can do more events to get our name out,” said Pozzuto.
Special events at The Peak are already starting to be planned. “The Peak is going to pair up with different clubs and organizations so people can hold meetings here which will draw more people. We’re going to do special events like movie nights and taco Tuesdays. We’re going to do certain holiday events and we’re going to incorporate specials with each event like a Christmas or St. Patrick’s Day special, so there is definitely more to come,” said Wroth.
Last week, The Peak hosted their grand re-opening, which was on Thursday and Friday. Students were encouraged to show up in costume and were entered into a raffle to receive various prizes.
The Peak Creamery accepts cash or general money from the SHU card. It is open on Thursday and Friday nights from 6pm until midnight.