Staff member retires after 6 years with residence hall cafeteria

After six years in the Missouri Southern residence halls cafeteria, a campus icon is calling it a career.

Betty Rose runs the cash register, and knows almost all of the students by name.

“I know quite a few of them,” she said, “I do that to keep my memory going.”

Rose has been married for 46 years.

Her husband once worked for Southern in the carpenter’s shop, but is ready to spend more time with her.

“My husband says I now have to help him make the bed,” Rose said, “but he’s ready for me to be loose and fancy-free.”

Rose’s last day was Aug. 25, but she says she will return.

“I’m planning on coming back,” she said. “I like the kids; I think they need the support.”

Rose acted as a strong support system for the students she encountered.

“She is the sweetest lady,” said Whitney Fair, sophomore studio art major. “Whenever I have a sad day, she is the brightness.

“She makes it all better.”

Some students went as far as to say she was almost like a relative.

“Everybody loves her,” said Dan Quarles, junior general business major.

“She’s like a mom to all of us.”

There’s an emotional bond between Rose and the students she has touched. Students say her caring nature sets her apart.

“You only get a few that’s nice and care about you,” said Courtney Baker, junior psychology major.

“Lunch will be a great deal more bland now that we’re just ID numbers,” said Josh Freeman, junior sociology and Spanish major.

The students’ affection for Rose is evident and it is a two-way street.

“I’ve enjoyed it very much,” Rose said.