Amanda Marie Brock
Hi Mandy! Welcome to Hot Bench! For all our readers who might not know, Mandy is our local superstar in Scott Commons who gives us that life-sustaining substance—coffee. Mandy, can you tell us a little about yourself?
My name is Amanda, and I’m 38 years old. I’ve been working at UVA Law for fifteen years, and I have two beautiful children. I love my job, and I love my coworkers. I like to play basketball and I love collecting stamps.
How did you get the nickname Mandy?
My cousin named me Amanda for her favorite soap opera. I think my Dad first started calling me Mandy when I was a kid, and it just went from there. I like Mandy.
What kind of stamps do you collect?
Like the older Black History stamps—those especially.
In the fifteen years that you’ve worked here, what are some changes that you’ve seen come to Scott Commons?
The food. That’s about the only thing. We used to be Grill Works, Montague Deli, and Bene Pizza. Now, we’re just Great Harvest Cafe. We used to have hot foods like hamburger steak, pork chops, fried chicken (a Thursday special), and chicken parmesan—we had so much stuff.
If there’s one thing you could change about the cafeteria, what would you change?
The food, to be honest. The stuff we have is good, but there aren’t as many options as before. We used to have more hot dishes and vegetarian options. Now, it’s four sandwiches at the deli and four sandwiches at the grill.
What is your favorite thing that you guys serve?
The most popular thing is the Yard Bird Salad and the Cubano from the grill.
I heard that you won an award recently. Please share details!
Okay! I got chosen, I don’t know how, but I got chosen. I think someone recommended me and wrote a letter, but I don’t know who. The award is the highest honor that Aramark gives to their employees. Aramark is a company based out of Philadelphia. Their goal is to enrich and nourish lives through innovative services in food. Out of 27,000 employees, they picked me and another person. I get to go to Arizona for a week on Aramark’s dime. I’m getting picked up in a limo from my house to the airport, and then I get pampered for a week in Arizona.
I see, I thought this was a university award, but Aramark is our dining contractor. What is it that Aramark provides?
Aramark provides the dining services, and then there’s another vendor who provides the food.
Let’s do a lightning round!
Fried chicken, I could eat it to death.
Favorite place in Charlottesville?
Jefferson-Madison Regional Library—I love to read.
What do you like to read?
I like mysteries.
Reading while taking a bath.
I think cats. They’re creepy to me. They’re like humans almost.
Boo—I like to call people boo.
What’s your spirit animal?
If you could live anywhere, where would it be?
I would want to live in Africa if I could. I want to go there one day.
Where did you grow up?
Right here in Charlottesville, VA.
Can you tell us about your adorable kids?=
I have a seventeen-year-old. Her name is Emoni. She’s a senior at Charlottesville High School. She is a very outgoing child. If you met her, you would fall in love with her. She wants to be a Certified Nurse Assistant—she always wants to help others. That’s what I love about her. And I have my son, his name is Jeremiah. He’s fourteen and all he knows is basketball. Basketball is life for him; he can tell you anything you want to know about basketball. I think he wants to be a superstar one day. He’s shy, but he’s a good kid. He just started high school.
Are your kids basketball fans?
Oh yes, my son is for Kentucky and my daughter likes Duke. I like UVA.
Do you play basketball?
Yes, it’s my favorite sport. When I have free time, that’s what I do with my son.
If you won the lottery, what would you do with it?
I would give half to charity and then I would take care of my parents, my siblings, and, of course, my kids. I wouldn’t quit my job. They say money doesn’t last forever, so I won’t quit.
If you could make one rule that everyone had to follow, what would it be?
Everyone to be nice to one another.
What’s your favorite thing about the Law School?
The students, faculty, and atmosphere. Everyone is so nice and pleasant to me. There is a good energy in this building that I can feel from my box. I love everyone I encounter at my counter!
What would you like to tell all the students?
I want to tell all the students, thank you for everything that you do. Thank you for always being so nice and pleasant to me when you come to my counter. Stay positive! Don’t let school stress you out. :)