English 163 Students Visit Local Businesses

By: Donfak Dongo, Diana Mora and Gary

The entrance to The Black Sheep restaurant.
In the English language, “black sheep” is an idiom used to describe a person that goes against the norms.

English 163 class visited the local restaurant Black Sheep – which is a small non-franchised restaurant – to learn about business practices in the United States. The founder of Black Sheep, Tyler Sailsbery, is a former student of UWW. He also has one more restaurant in Whitewater, Casual Joe’s.  Current university students are employed at both restaurants.

Tyler gave us a tour around the restaurants and a detailed explanation on how he started the business and what he valued about it. We also had the opportunity to taste some of the food made at Casual Joe’s. It was delicious!

Casual Joe’s has an open view concept where customers can see how their food is prepped.

We learned that it takes determination and creativity to start a business. For example, at Casual Joe’s the owner used inexpensive materials such as the chairs and tables that he purchased cheaply from UWW. He also did not get discouraged by the hardships of starting a business and did what he had to do to succeed. We learned that one can start a business with a small budget and keep improving as one grows.

The visit helped us see that owning a business necessitates a lot of hard work and management. Also, a restaurant should have something different from other competitors, but not too new or formal, because casual menus and atmosphere make people want to come back again.

This experience related with our textbook chapter and it helped us see different aspects of business in real life. It helped us see and compare business practices here and in our own countries of Mexico and Cameroon, for example.

Here is a video link that showcases the students’ tour experience at The Black Sheep and Casual Joe’s! Credits: Donfak “Bih” Dongo

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