Working with graduate assistants and student workers I have opportunity to form relationships and grow with a dedicated group of people. After all, it takes dedication to go to school, manage your extra-curricular activities, and give quality time to a campus job. The intrinsic make-up of higher education institutions mean students move on after three of four years (once they're hired, they generally stay), but the ebb and flow mean as they graduate, others are hired. Even after the requisite letters of reference are written, there are always a few you stay in touch with over the years.
Last week I got an unexpected gift in the mail from a former GA; a pink snuggie, complete with free book light. It made me smile, but not as much as the phone call on Thursday and the opportunity to learn a bit about the new job.
(And yes, this really is an "at lunch" post. It's my Sunday evening on reference duty!)