Students laud dining hall changes
By SARAH RYKOWSKI
Change is in the air at Noble Family Dining Hall on Saint Mary's campus. Students returning from break were greeted by a new setup that relocated some of the dining hall's more popular meal choices, most notably the soup and salad bar.
"I think it looks cool," said freshman Emily Storer.
Previously horseshoe-shaped, the soup and salad bar is now rearranged into an S.
"It makes it look a lot nicer," Dawn Harzula, a student worker in the Dining Hall, said. "I think it will be awkward for the student workers until they get used to it."
In addition, salads, both pasta and green, are created fresh by staff directly at the salad bar.
"The salad man is wonderful," Sarah Rembusch said. "The new salad bar is a big improvement. The food tastes fresh and I will actually go back for seconds."
"I enjoy the variety in the setup," senior Christin Joy Rose said.
Coffee, breads, bagels and desserts were moved to new locations, making the dining hall more organized.
"The flow is better," said sophomore Jen Torma.
The changes resulted from careful study of students' eating preferences and habits. Outside eating establishments were also analyzed.
"We made [the changes] because we wanted to," Kevin Kirwan, Director of Dining Services, said. "I saw an idea at a restaurant this summer in Toronto and brought it back. Over the course of the semester we'll continue to fine-tune the concept. We are testing new concepts and ideas. We don't have any more plans for additional equipment. [The feedback] has been very positive."
While these immediate changes ease the congestion in the dining facility, major renovation is still a year or two away.
"On the horizon there is a new facility planned," Kirwan said.
The new dining hall is one part of the Master Plan, which will provide a large-scale face-lift for Saint Mary's campus. Kirwan was optimistic about the new dining hall's construction.
"We've taken a number of tours at other colleges to take and capture the best," he said.
All News Stories for Wednesday, January 19, 19100