Dining services loses their edge

The cafe serves a lot of people during the day, especially since they cater to students and faculty for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They provide students with jobs so that they are able to pay for college through their work experience. Hours for the cafe accommodate varying students’ schedules. I was grateful to be able to sit down at a table for lunch, providing me with the opportunity to see my friends.

We are able to talk about how our day is going, and we make plans to meet back up at a certain time when everyone is free to have dinner together. We have made a lot of memories that revolve around the cafe.

Sharing those moments with my friends are things that I will cherish now and even after I leave Virginia Wesleyan University. When the cafe catered or held events, the provided food would be okay, but over the years, the cafe had their days when the food was on game. 

Having baked potato and mac and cheese bars where you got to choose what you wanted in your dish and chicken nugget day – the day when everyone went to the cafe and when it was the hardest to find a table, were some of my favorite days to swing by the cafe; but what would really take the cake were those special days when other schools came in and they would make a dish at each station; we, the students, were then given the opportunity to vote for whose food was the best. I can say, with utmost honesty, that I went back to my dorm in a food coma.

The cafe always came through for us during holidays as well. I enjoyed having a Thanksgiving dinner before we went on break. It was nice to spend it with my friends and I am sure it was nice to have an early Thanksgiving for the students that had to stay at school during our short break. Now, midnight breakfast, in my opinion, is one of the greatest events that the cafe held.

They brought out great breakfast food which includes pancakes, bacon, eggs, and some different kinds of fruit. Music played and a dance floor was ready for when that song we all love came on. It was a great way to kick back and enjoy a night before we hit the books for finals.

Unfortunately, we do not get to experience these types of events due to COVID, but even still, the cafe has not been earning its money’s worth this semester.

The school knew that new regulations needed to be implemented because of the Corona virus but did not cut any of the costs for food. We are currently paying the same amount of money as we did in the past for cafe services, though they have cancelled the type of events that I’ve mentioned above and have limited the number of stations that are serving food during regular cafe hours.

They closed two of the main stations during lunch and dinner. Though the sandwich stand appears to be open, sometimes customers aren’t able to make a custom sandwich. The food is also not as good as it was last year. To get our money’s worth for the food part of our tuition, I’d recommend opening all the lines and not be limited as to what is being served.

Also, bringing back popular food items would make us less likely to go off campus to find food elsewhere. Additionally, the cafe could still provide the different food options, like those offered in the past, but could make the food available in the current format. For example, for midnight breakfast, the cafe could serve breakfast food for students and it be available to-go.

Therefore, the cafe is still following guidelines while letting students be able to enjoy going to the cafe again.

By Jamie Mckinney