Modified Grill and Quakeria hours call for community forum
Guilford’s administration recently modified the dining facilities’ hours of operation due to the recent budgetary shortfall.
Shortened hours are now in effect for all on-campus dining options during the week, and the Quakeria and the Grill are completely closed on Saturdays. This means that on Saturdays, the only on-campus food option for students is a sit-down meal at the caf, since taking meals “to-go” is prohibited.
“Saturdays typically have a very low usage number, and Fridays as well,” said Jon Varnell, vice president for administration, in regards to the Grill and Quakeria traffic. “We attempted to make adjustments that least affected the student body.”
“I want to be able to eat when I want to eat, no restrictions,” said sophomore India Good-Prochaska. “Saturday is the main day I want to stop by and eat at the Grill.”
The altered hours have had major effects on students with strict schedules.
“The hours last semester were perfect for me,” said second semester first-year Amburee Edwards. “They allowed me to take my medicines on time. Because of the new hours I can’t take my medicines on time, so that messes up my day. That throws me off majorly.”
Students are also irritated that they only heard of these changes by word of mouth instead of an official college announcement.
“I first heard of the hours through a friend who expressed frustration,” senior Kim Kleimeier said. “Give the students more opportunities to eat. The caf can get really crowded a lot of times and most of the food is gone, and it’s frustrating because I only have certain times I can eat and I’m trying to save money.”
The new hours were posted on the Guilford dining website as well as at the front desk of the dining hall. Still, a number of students discovered the brand new hours when they went in search of a late-night meal and came away empty-handed.
“I walked over to the Grill at 11:30 p.m. last Wednesday and it was closed,” said sophomore Niki Gaines. “So I returned home hungry and pissed off.”
“Kids will never go back to their dorms hungry,” said Snehal Desmukh, director of dining services. “We don’t want to burden our students and families with additional meal cost prices other than the minimal increase that happens every year.”
Before the fall semester started, administrators nominated two students to serve on a dining committee that helps determine future decisions.
“It’s funny — when decisions are made here, the first reaction is ‘Man, you guys did this to us on purpose,’” said Aaron Fetrow, vice president for student affairs and dean of students. “Not at all — we are just trying to help and keep costs down for students and parents.”
“I’d like some sort of discussion between the students who share this frustration and the people who implemented the new hours,” Kleimeier said. “I’d like to know their thoughts on making this decision.”
Guilford Dining Services held an open forum on Tuesday, Sept. 4, where several students voiced their concerns on the new dining hours. Community Senate also touched on the subject during their meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 5. Whether these concerns will bring about change remains to be seen.
“If we change the hours, that’s where it will be changed, through the forums,” said Leisman. “Whatever the students want is possible.”