The Applied Approach
Spring 2004 Vol. 2 No. 1 A newsletter for the School of Applied Sciences

In this Issue

Letter from the Dean

Letter from the Applied Sciences Alumni Chapter president and president elect

New president of national speech-language-hearing group will focus on shortage of teachers with doctorates

Grandparents who raise grandchildren get special recognition--and help

Senior from Alabama is first recipient of Park and Recreation Management Scholarship

DeSoto Center's day classes in social work and criminal justice reach out to working students

How to stay involved in your school

School of Applied Sciences is proud of spring 2004 Phi Kappa Phi initiates

Professor's concern about kids on welfare leads to recognition from state group

Two departments get new leaders

Three Applied Sciences scholars receive UM's highest honor

National award is icing on the cake for dietetics professor who loves teaching

Teaching students to handle alcohol responsibly is task of new UM position held by Applied Sciences grad


The Applied Approach is published twice a year by the School of Applied Sciences and The University of Mississippi Alumni Association. Production services are provided by the offices of Media and Public Relations and University Publications. For more information, contact: Sheila Dossett, Alumni Association, (662) 915-7375,


Restaurant provides a future--and a home for family and consumer sciences graduates

When Tori Puckett graduated from The University of Mississippi in 1996, she did not have a set career goal in mind. Like most recent graduates, Tori said she was still searching for her future when she left Ole Miss.

“Like many 20-somethings, I really didn’t know where my future was heading. I just knew I wanted a fulfilling career I would love to do everyday. That’s hard for anyone to find,” she said.

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Tori and Jason Puckett

Tori’s husband, Jason, agreed: “I travelled widely after graduating in 1995, and was still contemplating my future plans. I didn’t want to be one of those people who just had a job. No, I wanted a career I could care about.”

In 2001, the couple’s future found them. Jason, a home economics major, and Tori, a family and consumer sciences graduate, decided to put their educational and professional experience to good use with the purchase of Panini’s/Oxford Catering Company.

“It was a tough decision, but it is one that we’ve never regretted,” Jason said.

After 2-1/2 years in business, the couple said they’ve had their ups and downs, and general first-time owners mishaps, but know they made the right decision to invest in Panini’s.

“Business is steady and constant,” Tori said. “We have a regular client base that includes many people from the Oxford community and many dedicated Ole Miss alumni.”

Jason nodded his agreement. “Ole Miss as a whole has been really supportive of Panini’s, and we really appreciate the business and support.

“Not only did we receive a quality education at Ole Miss, but now that we’ve graduated and are trying our best to stay afloat and continue to be successful, the University has been extremely helpful and supportive. It’s one of the reasons why we love Oxford and decided to make this town our home,” he said.

In addition to catering luncheons and cocktail parties, preparing special meals for home football games and spring’s Red-Blue Weekend, Panini’s provides catering services for several Oxford businesses, including Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi.

Sarah Hollis, director of marketing and physicians’ services for Baptist- North Mississippi, described Panini’s service as “second-to-none.”

“I’ve had nothing but great things from Panini’s, and Tori and Jason are the best to work with when planning events. They cater meals for our monthly Ladies Luncheons, and everyone simply raves about the service and food."



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