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Tippie makes a grilling

BY LAUREN MILLS | OCTOBER 07, 2009 7:20 AM

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The Tippie School of Business has a new Grill Master.

The prestigious title and Golden Spatula that accompanies it now belong to Kevin Felker, a lecturer in management sciences.

The Second Faculty Grill-Off is run by Delta Sigma Pi, and it supports the Tippie Build Project.

Tippie Build, which is in its third year, partners with Habitat for Humanity to build homes for families in need. This year, the organization took over the UI Homecoming Council’s project, which fell through because of problems with the original plot of land.

In addition to the Grill-Off, students were offered lunch including freshly grilled burgers and hot dogs with a suggested donation of $5.

The event drew around 190 students and raised $1,158, up from last year when donations totaled approximately $600, UI senior Joe Dickinson said.

“The majority were familiar faces from the business school,” he said.

The Tippie Build is financed by several fundraisers held by business groups. The grill-off’s collections will contribute to the $50,000 needed for the building project.

Despite clouds, noise, and dust emanating from a construction project in the courtyard, UI sophomores Patrick Mahoney and Libby Fuller sat at a table chowing down on their grilled delicacies and potato chips. The two work at the business school.

“Our bosses came back with food and told us it was down here,” Fuller said. She was motivated to attend, she said, because “Tippie Build is awesome slash food is delicious.”

Dickinson and fellow UI senior Austin Ladd were responsible for arranging donations and recruiting faculty for the event.

“The Golden Spatula is definitely an enticing factor, as well as bragging rights for a year,” Ladd said, noting last year a group had security guards at the grilling table.

This year, the departments heckled each other as they prepared their dishes.

“We are on the doorstep of victory,” said UI Assistant Professor Ryan Wilson as he watched his colleagues from the accounting department prepare snapper tacos with a mango salsa.

Other departments opted for a simpler approach.

“Recipe is a bit of a strong word for anything I do. It would imply some ability,” UI Assistant Professor Phil Davies said about the finance department’s meal of steak and corn on the cob.

“I’m an international person, and I’m just trying to bring some Iowa to the table,” the Brit joked.

The grilling was evaluated by a panel of three judges chosen from the ranks of the school’s students, faculty, and staff.

“There’s a lot of effort being put into these dishes right here,” UI senior and grill-off judge Sean Wandro said, testing a bite of marinated salmon.

He had an economics test shortly after the event, and he joked he would “see if I can’t get the department to raise my grade if I score its dish up a bit.”

But mangos, comfort food, and grades paled in comparison to the sea salt brine pork chops prepared by Felker and his department, who walked away with the enviable title.

“It was cooked to perfection,” he said, holding his trophy.


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