Mrs. Diane Buccafuri serves smiles


Hannah Nguyen

Cafeteria worker Diane Buccafuri works hard every day to ensure that lunch is the best part of the students’ day.

TOWAMENCIN- Thousands of students are served lunch each day at North Penn High School, and those who serve the student body are the ones who tend to be acknowledge the least. They are people like Diane Buccafuri, who are hardworking, but are more than just “lunch ladies.”

Buccafuri started working at North Penn five years ago when a friend who was working here during the time mentioned the job to her. As a stay at home mom searching for a job, she decided the job was right for her.

“The hours worked out well for me because I have kids in school and I was able to get my kids off to school and go to work and then I could get home in time before my kids got home from school. A friend of mine worked here and she told me about the job and I thought it sounded like something that would work out for me,” said Buccafuri.

Many students may overlook how much the cafeteria workers do. When Buccafuri arrives at work, she and the other employees in the cafeteria go straight to setting things up.

“When we get here we have to set up our line for the meal everyday. We have to see what’s on the menu and we have to get out everything that is supposed to be out there. We have to make sure the food that is supposed to be cold is cold and the food that is supposed to be hot is hot and up to temperature,” explained Buccafuri.

Buccafuri contributes a lot in the cafeteria and is never working on just one thing. One day you may see her dealing with the food and on another day you may see her at the cash register.

“I serve the food, I work on the register, I also come in early sometimes and help with the breakfast cart that’s up in front of the school and I make the sandwiches and get them ready. I also take care of the new yogurt machine that we have. On Mondays I fill it up and get it ready to go and on Fridays I clean it up and get it ready for Monday,” mentioned Buccafuri.

Buccafuri has grown to love her coworkers and has built great friendships with them throughout the five years she’s been at North Penn High School. When you enter the cafeteria when it’s empty without any of the students, you see all of them having a great time talking and laughing. Working together over the years has made them a family and has allowed them to build a close relationship together.

“In this kitchen, we all are a team and we work together as a team. Everybody has to work as a team to make this all happen because there’s a lot of students that we’re feeding all day and it is a lot to get it all done,” said Buccafuri.

Dealing with hungry teenagers who are rushing to get their lunch is an everyday occurrence for Buccafuri. But as a mom, being around kids is not an issue.

“We just have to make sure that we’re kind to them and making sure that they’re getting the right amount of food on their tray,” said Buccafuri.

Before she began working at North Penn High School, Buccafuri was a stay at home mom. She has four kids with their ages ranging from 13 to 21. Prior to that, she used to babysit and was a waitress.

“My life was just taking care of the kids, the house, the family. Once my youngest daughter was in second grade that’s when I decided that it was definitely time for me to get a job—I was ready to do my own thing.”

Being a mom, Buccafuri is always running around trying to get things done. If she’s not with her kids, she’s busy at work but if she’s not busy with work, she’s usually busy trying to take her kids to their games or outside of school activities. Constantly working all day makes it difficult to find time and relax and discover new hobbies but she enjoys being able to watch her kids play sports.

Buccafuri enjoys the environment she walks into for work each day. She enjoys being able to leave the house to work with the people she works with and getting the chance to talk to them. She emphasizes how the kids are always kind and just wants to give back to them.

“I want to make lunch be one of the best parts of their day,” said Buccafuri.