Angelo Devito Makes Thursday “Snack Day” for Hungry Engineers

By Jilleen Barrett, Senior Writer

Angelo Devito, a professor in the electrical and computer engineering departments for the past 44 years, just wants his students to be successful. That’s why he does what he can to relate to his students and form a relationship with each and every one of them.

Devito is a self-described “traditional” man who wholly believes in wearing a tie to work, enjoys watching hockey and visits Tennessee, where his brother lives, as much as he can. He also loves teaching, and does whatever he can to gain his students’ attention while in the classroom. He thoroughly enjoys being in his kitchen at home in Yonkers, where his Italian roots lead him to cook and bake frequently.

While many professors at Manhattan College may be known for having a good relationship with their students, Devito gets close with his students by using his baking skills to host a “snack day” for any class he teaches.

The tradition started when Devito, who graduated from Manhattan in 1974, started teaching a training program at the Indian Point energy center about 20 years ago. Since many of the students in the training program were MC graduates, he knew them and would bring them baked goods to eat while they worked.

From there, he started making them for his night classes at MC and Westchester Community College, also offering tea or coffee as he recognized that some students may need help staying awake. After seeing students continue to be successful, he decided to keep his tradition of snacks, drinks and/or baked goods going.

This year, he was promoted from adjunct professor to visiting professor at MC and began teaching more classes during the day, including two classes on Thursday. Since he has Wednesdays off, he makes an assortment of baked goods — sometimes as many as five different treats — and brings them in on Thursday.

“I joke with them, ‘This is to keep you awake,’ but they enjoy it,” Devito said. “The fact that they enjoy it makes me happy and I bring it in.”

Jackson Haft, an electrical engineering major in both of Devito’s Thursday classes, says the professor keeps an assortment of snacks in his office for students to come by and grab at any time. Because of Devito’s efforts to foster a community amongst him and his students, Haft says he has gotten to know the other engineering students better.

“I haven’t been in a class that he hasn’t either offered us coffee or hot chocolate, tea, cookies, any snacks — and he’s like, ‘You can come whenever, take some snacks if you guys need’,” Haft said. “Sometimes we have long classes, and he wants us to stay awake and stay engaged with the class.”

One of Devito’s favorite baked goods to bring in is called the Ranger cookie, a thin, crispy cookie that includes oats, chocolate chunks and coconut. Devito makes it with the best pasteurized eggs he can find, as well as a mix of sugars and flours in order to make the cookies somewhat healthier. 

Jack Griffin, a junior computer engineering student in one of the Thursday classes, said that at the beginning of the semester, he couldn’t believe Devito meant he would really bring in snacks for the class on a weekly basis.

“At first, I don’t think many of the people actually believed that he would be bringing in snacks every Thursday,” Griffin wrote to The Quadrangle in an email. “We thought it would be a small treat after tests, or some weeks, but not all weeks. […] However, when we realized it would be every Thursday, the class became a lot more excited about the idea.”

Griffin explained it makes the sheer anticipation of going to class on Thursday a little bit better.

“It gives students something to look forward to in the later days of the week,” he said. “I think it also gives a nice reward for making it through some of the longer class days. It makes learning and going to class a more fun experience.”

2 thoughts on “Angelo Devito Makes Thursday “Snack Day” for Hungry Engineers

  1. At Indian Point, we used to call it Angelo’s Deli. Instructors and students from all disciplines were able to enjoy. Glad to see he is continuing. Now I need a brownie.

  2. Indeed. It’s nice to see that Angelo is keeping up his tradition with new classes. His baked good were always on point and we all appreciated them! Enjoy!

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