Testimonials for
Candace Smith Etiquette

There is no greater compliment than knowing you taught someone something that improved his or her life.

Below is a sampling of statements of confidence shared in recent feedback:

Hosting Candace was a real privilege, and after a look at what she would lead our students through I knew they were in for an important but often overlooked lesson on how to present themselves, how to communicate, and how to respond to often-tacit social cues. I plan to incorporate some of the lessons she taught our students into some of the professional development work I do with students and faculty.

Art Carden
Associate Professor of Economics
Brock School of Business
Samford University

Candace Smith provided both etiquette and networking training sessions for our students in Samford University’s Brock School of Business. Students learned practical tips and techniques to use as they attend dinners, socials, or networking events with business professionals. Candace’s seminars added life-long value to the lives of our students. She engaged students in a way that captivated and engaged them throughout the presentations. We are truly grateful she was willing to share her time and talents with us.

Kathryn Boyd
Director of Professional Success
Brock School of Business

The etiquette workshop was a great learning experience for our graduate students.  It helped them develop the soft skills that make all of the difference for successful networking at events and receptions.  I have no doubt the confidence and knowledge gained will pay huge professional dividends for our students.

Cary Deck
Economics, Finance, Legal Studies
University of Alabama

Candace Smith helped me tremendously in an area that has always caused me anxiety: proper etiquette while in a social and dining environment. Being a professional in the hospitality industry, I am constantly working social and corporate events that require me to not only represent my position and the hotel I work for but to also lead my team to present the proper etiquette.  Candace was professional, inspiring and engaging. Aside from that, she had a very relaxed and humorous teaching style that I thought was great. She was able to capture the attention of the different types of students attending the class and I was very impressed with her ability to handle a younger and somewhat louder crowd. She was able to answer all questions that were thrown her way and created a welcoming environment that made you comfortable asking whatever question that came to mind.  While I thought I was doing okay with the personable skills that I already had, I quickly learned that I still had a lot of work to do. With Candace’s attention to detail, she politely was able to guide me to success.

I personally worked with Candace as the Manager of Event Services at my hotel that was to host the etiquette dinner for a client.  She was very pleasant to work with; she knew what she needed and was open minded to try a new style of training to make better use of our ballroom space. She is extremely detail oriented and being that way myself, I absolutely enjoyed working with her.
I have walked away from the class with new knowledge of where to put the knife while dining, how to utilize just my left hand while networking while keeping my right hand free, how to properly utilize the utensils provided for any type of meal, and knowing how to recover from an awkward and clumsy moment. There are so many useful tips that she taught me and the list goes on. Thank you from the bottom of my heart Candace, you have truly helped me in not only my professional life but how to also strive in my everyday life with confidence. 
Alyssa Mize, Manager of Event Services
DoubleTree by Hilton Irvine Spectrum
Irvine, California

“Best Part of the Entire Evening of networking and dining etiquette training?”  sampling of Chapman University School of Pharmacy student feedback:

The dining etiquette dinner itself... Candace can answer any question … so educational to learn how to properly hold the dining utensils as I was never taught that … being with others to learn how to do things that can help us present ourselves better … loved the part about how to hold your plate, napkin, and glass during a reception—will always use that! … great to practice in networking part--first with paper/plastic and then have the real thing when we mingled with others … the wine and the cheese in practicing what we learned in terms of meeting others … the practical tips and the way Candace is organized but counts on our questions to move the teaching … the encouragement to ask questions and patience in helping us … the demonstration and illustration with the slides and in person at our tables to show us how to hold utensils properly AND eat the food at the same time … I know what to do at networking receptions now! ... Candace did the best job of handling difficult and sensitive questions that came up gracefully and truthfully … I love everything about both sessions, but the best is learning how to hold the plate, glass and napkin … the whole evening was completely useful … Candace’s personality … Your eagerness and insistence on our questions, and your concluding remarks at the end of the dinner … having wine and cheese to practice mingling was very real and made me realize that this is important socially, too … being with others students to learn how to dine professionally … I learned that my handshake, which I thought was good, needed some work and that was important to me because I want to present myself in the best way … being able to learn techniques and in the moment applying them and getting helped on the spot … Candace demonstrating in all ways that we could trust her by easily talking with us and her answers were reasonable … I couldn’t pinpoint a best moment--because it was really fun to learn! ... Learned the most important essentials … Amazing, awesome, and fantastic …

Chapman University School of Pharmacy Students
Etiquette Dinner and Networking Event, January 2018
Orange, California

Candace Smith provided several trainings for our staff and student research fellows at the Center for Growth and Opportunity.  We asked Candace to conduct a staff training on Professionalism in a Shared Workspace.  She created a comfortable and purposeful setting for our staff to discuss important topics about our workspaces, our organization’s goals, and our roles.  The conversation has continued since the training with Candace.  We appreciate that Candace provided us with a framework and tools to discuss these critical topics.

Candace also conducted a cocktail hour/networking training and an etiquette dinner training for our staff and students.  In all trainings, Candace was well-prepared and thoughtful of the groups’ specific needs.  Her approach to etiquette training Is logical and approachable.  We are appreciative of the time Candace spent with our group!

Samantha (Burrows) Wright
Chief Operations Officer
Center for Growth and Opportunity at
Utah State University

I attended the Etiquette Luncheon with Candace Smith event this Fall at a Jon M. Huntsman School of Business Focused Friday event.  This was by far the best 
event I have ever attended at the Huntsman School in preparing Huntsman students for future business success.

Candace taught us how to be comfortable using utensils while dining and to have confidence in a networking setting.  I learned exactly how to eat certain foods and conduct myself in a professional manner while dining with colleagues.  

Since the dining etiquette training, I attended a Risk Management Superday interview with JP Morgan Chase & Co. in New York City.  As part of the event, I attended a networking luncheon with executives and leaders of the company.  This luncheon was very formal, including some of the classiest dishes I’ve ever experienced.  Because of the training I’d received from Candace, I had confidence in my abilities to eat what I was served while interacting with those around me. 

After the luncheon, the JP Morgan executive host at my table approached me to say that he was "impressed with my etiquette skills."  He said they seldom have students interviewing that show such ease and ability at the table.  The following Monday, I was offered the summer internship position with JP Morgan Chase.  

Scott Wilcox
President, Business Ambassadors
Jon M. Huntsman School of Business

Candace Smith conducted an excellent seminar on socializing at networking events for our entire staff that was both fun and useful.  Our team ranges in age from early twenties to early sixties and it is multicultural.  The workshop was appropriate for all.

Diane Kaplan
President, Rasmuson Foundation
Anchorage, Alaska

Candace was engaging, professional and a delight to listen to.  She spoke to our freshmen chapter of the National League of Young Men.  Candace offered practical skills on introductions, dining out and gave each boy a demonstration of the proper handshake.  She made an effort to find out what types of gatherings they had coming up, in order to participate confidently and be a gracious guest.  The Class of 2020 enjoyed her meeting and are prepared to make a good first impression!  Thank you Candace for creating a fun and interactive etiquette lesson that these members will take with them into young adulthood.

Carla Gilkerson
Protocol Chairman - Class of 2020
National League of Young Men

Candace Smith provided intensive training on business etiquette and dining etiquette in a casual manner for the staff at The Institute for Humane Studies.  By tailoring her training to the unique culture of our organization, Candace demonstrated from the beginning that her advice was valuable for our staff.  The interactive format Candace uses is helpful and informative by providing a setting where staff can ask their questions.  The etiquette expertise that Candace Smith has is evident when she answered challenging questions from staff.  Learning how to own the room at networking events with a hands-on approach was ideal for learning advanced skills at networking events.  Candace provided a lot of information to consider regarding business etiquette.  She was also a pleasure to work with leading up to the event.  Despite adverse weather conditions on the original date of our training, Candace kept a professional attitude and assisted us in reorganizing the entire event for an alternative date.  We were all astounded by her poised and commanding presence in difficult circumstances.

Joshua Ammons
Institute for Humane Studies at George Mason University
Events Strategy and Management Specialist
Arlington, VA

Candace Smith presents etiquette in an entirely gentle and logical manner.  I feel that etiquette can be intimidating for those who wish to learn the subject because we simply don’t know some of the rules that we feel we should know.  Candace, with good humor and patience, helped our students (and faculty) learn not just the basic rules of dining etiquette but also the reasons why those rules exist. To know that these rules of dining etiquette are built, not out of duty, but out of respect for our fellow diners makes them less superficial and more relatable.

Mark David Witte
Associate Professor of Economics
MBA Director
College of Charleston
Charleston, SC

Thank you so much for conducting the etiquette workshop with our first-generation college students during the Promising Futures Bridge Program.  In our student surveys, your workshop was one of the highest rated in the program and students had nothing but wonderful things to say! Your ability to take a formal subject and present it in such a relevant and engaging manner is nothing short of magical. The undergraduate students who participated to date still cite how helpful the workshop was in navigating the many networking events offered on and off campus.  Their growth in confidence at such events is a true testament to your methods. Your kind nature and high regard for the art of etiquette make for a wonderful presentation covering the intricacies of networking.  I look forward to having you work with our first-generation students again!

Crystal De La Riva
Academic Advisor, Academic Advising Center
Program Coordinator, Promising Futures Program
for First Generation College Students
Chapman University
Orange, California

Candace Smith has the ability to communicate etiquette knowledge to students and faculty whether you are a novice or a professional, she can add value to your program.  She has the ability to convey this important information in a guiding and congenial manner while impressing upon you why the information is important.

Peter T. Calcagno, Ph.D., Professor of Economics
Director, Center for Public Choice & Market Process
Department of Economics
College of Charleston
Charleston, SC

I never knew how etiquette is so important until I attended your dining training in Logan, Utah. Before the training, I thought of myself as a polite guest.  I was terribly mistaken!  But I learned that in the best way possible with Candace.  I relearned everything about etiquette at this training.  Not only did I really enjoy learning about how to improve my etiquette, I enjoyed the night and company more than anything else.  Candace made learning fun and exciting.  I thoroughly enjoyed her company and personality.  She created an environment that was most memorable.  We laughed and had some great conversations with not only each other but with the whole group.  While being a college student, I think this was one of the best experiences I could have asked for and will forever remember that special night with Candace. 

Thank you, Candace!

Rylee Marron
Programming Associate
Logan, Utah

Candace is an excellent etiquette teacher.  Etiquette has always seemed an intimidating topic to me, but her kind and gentle nature made it a pleasure to learn.
Calvin Blackwell
Professor, Chair
Department of Economics
College of Charleston
Charleston, SC

Candace was the consummate professional.  She came and taught our students displaying both grace and professionalism.  The majority of our students in the MMIS Program at Utah State University are international.  Candace was able to teach basic concepts that applied across many different cultures.  In addition, she was able to captivate the audience with her charm, teaching the concepts while maintaining a sense of humor.  Days after the event, I am still receiving thank you notes and compliments expressing how wonderful the session with Candace was.  She left such a lasting impression that we, as a school, would like to invite her yearly to replicate the successful event.  I cannot say enough about how wonderful it was to have her interact with our students.

Lindi Brown
Program Director and Advisor
Master of Management and Information Systems
Jon M. Huntsman School of Business, Utah State University

Your educational etiquette class was incredibly helpful!  Now I will always “own the room" when I walk in because “I belong there.”  I have already been to a reception and used your helpful set up to hold everything in my left had while being able to network.  Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with the Market Process Scholars and also to teach us about etiquette in the workplace.

Liz Ward
College of Charleston, Class of 2018
Economics and Math Majors, Psychology Minor
Market Process Scholar

For the past few years our organization has had the distinct pleasure of having Candace Smith work with our staff in small group settings.  Candace's professional etiquette training has had a transformational impact on our professional staff and her approach to teaching has helped us strengthen the core commitments we share as part of our organizational culture.  Each individual that participated in the training sessions with Candace came away with a stronger commitment to live life with more grace and dignity--attributes that we think fall right to the bottom line of how we ultimately measure success within our organization.  In my experience, the power of the message that Candace has shared is not only embedded in the message she shares through her formal teaching but also in the quiet power of her example of living by principles of graciousness and mindfulness.  As an organization, and as individuals who have been forever changed by the experience of being in one of Candace Smith's learning sessions, we cherish our association with Candace, and look forward to her continued visits.

Chris Fawson
Board of Directors, Strata
Dr. Vernon Maughan Buehler and MaRee C Buehler Endowed Professor
Economics and Finance
Jon M. Huntsman School of Business, Utah State University

As an organization that employs a large number of young professionals, we were very excited to have Candace come and host a round table discussion on common etiquette questions that they had.  The insight and expertise she imparted were invaluable and highly educational.  It was a pleasure for us to hear her personal experiences as they related to the questions that were asked.
Later, it was our treat to have Candace work directly with a group of college students on some of the more basic etiquette tips for cocktail party socializing.  Without a lot of prior experience, the notion of "etiquette training" or "cocktail party socializing" could seem intimidating.  But like any great host, Candace's humble, upbeat, and informative approach dispelled any sense of anxiety or worry that the students had, and a number of the students reported that it was one of their favorite pieces of training they've received while in school.
Any business or organization that is looking to bolster the confidence of its employees with regards to etiquette training should seriously consider the high-quality, positive, and instructional approach that Candace provides.
Randy Simmons
President and Director of Research
Logan, Utah

Dear Candace:

I wanted to thank you on behalf of the Chapman University School of Pharmacy Class of 2018 students for the advice and education you provided at our dinner program earlier this year.  The students enjoyed the evening and the feedback I have from them indicates that the program should be an annual event.  We posted some pictures on our web site and I had a number of colleague Dean’s and others in the profession note how progressive and on target our young school is in presenting this essential information to students.  We will be in touch soon to arrange our second event which will be even bigger than our last as the student numbers increase.

Thanks again for your excellent work!


Ronald P Jordan, R.Ph. FAPhA
Chapman University School of Pharmacy

Candace was a joy to work with!  She presented to our MBA students concentrating on first impressions, greetings, introductions, and network gathering events.  She has a relaxed, entertaining demeanor when she teaches, which isn’t really something you’d expect when talking about an ‘Etiquette’ professional.  The students enjoyed learning, and applied their lessons both during the class and during a mix and mingle later that night.  My hat’s off to Candace for connecting with the students and providing such a valuable lesson.
Col Steve A. Leftwich (USAF Ret)
MBA Career Program Manager
Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University

Candace Smith is the best!  She won over our rowdy and boisterous group at our staff retreat with great presentation skills, charm, and a terrific sense of humor.  She clearly knows her subject and our team was engrossed in learning etiquette and how to raise our level of success in social situations.  Here's another bit of advice: I took my two teenage boys to a session with Candace and it worked wonders on their attitude toward social situations!

I'd recommend Candace Smith to any group or family interested in learning the rules of etiquette in an understandable and accessible way.

Dr. David Curry
CEO and President
Open Doors USA

Candace is graceful and poised in all types of presentations.  The professional etiquette training I attended this time was set in a round table fashion so that it could be a discussion, allowing the staff to share ideas and comments while Candace easily directed the conversation to cover professional greetings, lunch meetings, proper email and text communications and meetings.  The time Candace spends to discuss large to small situations was so helpful.

I left with ideas to improve my professional interaction both internally with colleagues as well as with external professional partners.

Rebecca Stowers
Director of Development
Logan, Utah

When I was searching for a new academic position this year, I met with Candace Smith to learn the etiquette guidelines which would prepare me for interacting in several settings, both formal and informal, including dining.  She helped me think about how to improve the way in which I approach colleagues, university authorities and donors during formal and informal meetings and gatherings.  I feel that all around, Candace has helped me to transmit a confident, reliable and clearer message of who I am and where I am going.

Hernan Daniel Bejarano
Postdoctoral Research Associate
Economic Science Institute
Chapman University

Candace Smith worked with our students to help them develop the skills and confidence they need to present themselves well.  She carefully tailored these trainings to the needs of our group.  As a result of her expertise, passion for the subject, and careful attention to detail, the students came away with a wealth of practical tips for use at receptions, dinners, meetings, and other professional events.  Thank you, Candace, for an enjoyable and productive experience.

Jayme Lemke
Associate Director of Academic & Student Programs and Senior Research Fellow
Mercatus Center at George Mason University

You can find the same confidence in social and business situations as these students.  Contact me to schedule an etiquette learning session for your company, group, or organization.

Candace Smith
(714) 639-0825