The Fall 2021 semester is now in full swing, and with it arises many questions on how the school’s administration plans on leading students to a safe and fun in-person experience. The NJIT Gourmet Dining Services has iterated through several changes over the past few semesters in response to the dynamic needs required by COVID-19. In Spring 2021, the hours of operation for GDS had been extended on weekends to better accommodate students looking to dine in the morning, more efficient food preparation practices were put in place to combat long virtual queues of students waiting for meals
, and some on-campus dining options were changed.
You can read more about the previous semester’s GDS changes here: https://njitvector.com/2021/02/spring-changes-to-njit-dining-services/
With the school pushing to have all students be in person this semester, a new set of GDS changes will be applied. Dr. Marybeth Boger, Dean of Students and Campus Life, as well as David Arluna, Food Service Director, have helped shed light on the situation.
According to Dr. Boger, all dining stations will return to buffet-style, as it was before the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a large jump from virtual queues of the previous semester, but rest assured that the school is approaching the situation tentatively. NJIT administration is actively monitoring the apparent danger levels of COVID-19
, and is willing to quickly make changes to the dining scheme as necessary. If students themselves are still feeling wary about dining in person, there are other options. The mobile ordering system developed last year will remain in place for all retail dining locations, such as the Warren Street Cafe and Smashburger. This will continue to allow students to decide how much face-to-face interaction they have with other people during their meals, while keeping a wide variety of food choices available.
The school is also beginning to address concerns coming from students revolving around nutritional needs. Digital monitors are being added to nearly all stations in the dining hall, containing information on the food being served. These screens will display the portion sizes, calorie count and other nutritional details. Arluna, when explaining these new health-based measures, made it clear that this is intended to be a positive change for students.
Dr. Boger stated, “if [students] have suggestions on ways in which we can improve the quality, I definitely want [them] to be able to share the suggestions, whether it be about the quality of food or even what we offer. They are very welcome.”