TROY — The dreams of Troy High School sophomore Noah Dimel are lined with orange dust, and with a little help from Chester Cheetah, all of Noah’s dreams came true on Thursday in his homeroom English class.
Representatives from Frito-Lay of Dayton visited Noah’s English class at THS after receiving a letter from Noah on how much he loved their products.
“The assignment was to write a business letter to a company about our favorite food,” the 16-year-old sophomore said. “I chose Baked Cheetos, because every day since freshman year I’ve been eating those things at lunch. I went to the hospital for my friend, and they had a vending machine in the waiting room. They had Baked Cheetos in there, and I cleared the whole vending machine. They had to put more in there, and I almost cleared half of those, too. I’m a Baked Cheeto addict. I told Frito-Lay that I ate them every day, and how much I liked them.”
Noah’s English teacher, Mike Gegel, explained that the original intention of the assignment was for students to learn how to properly conduct a business letter, as well as a means of connection to parts of the professional world.
“What I wanted my students to be able to do was compose a letter to a business in a certain format,” Gegel said. “In doing that, they also learned about the company itself by looking at the website of the company, and learning more about the products it has to offer.
“The letters were set up in such a way where in the first paragraph, they told what they enjoyed about the product so much. The second paragraph detailed the context in which they enjoyed the product. The third paragraph was for telling about any suggestions they had to improve the product or the website.
“Amidst all of that, I tried to have them use a certain amount of descriptors to have the letter become as lively as possible.
“Frito-Lay loved Noah’s letter so much, they contacted the school through the guidance office and asked to come in for a visit.”
Frito-Lay district sales manager Mourtada Sakho arrived, along with Chester Cheetah himself, with a thank-you letter from Frito Lay. They also distributed free samples of Noah’s favorite snack to all his classmates, as well as multiple large bags for Noah himself.
“We wanted to present a special thank-you to Noah today, from the letter we recieved a month ago that expressed his love of the Cheeto product,” Sakho said. “We’ve done this before, and we’d love to come more often and show the neighborhood that we are here for them and are grateful for their support.”
“It was really sweet and pretty funny,” Noah said. “It was goofy seeing the cheetah walk in, and everybody getting free chips was very cool.”
“I think it’s great that they came today,” Gegel said of Frito-Lay’s appearance. “At the age my students are as sophomores, it’s really good for them to have some sort of connection with a real company — a place that they might be working down the road,” Gegel said. “I think that’s a good thing for the stage they’re in right now as far as development goes.”
Chester Cheetah was asked about his thoughts on the experience, but declined comment.
Reach Cody Willoughby at firstname.lastname@example.org.