Serving students in-person or, temporarily, through take-out, Dining Services is readjusting to accomodating a full-capacity campus for the first time in a year and a half. But as the number of people lining up for meals every day has risen, the number of dining employees has lagged behind. Dining Services, like the rest of the food service industry, is in need of more staff.
One shift that Dining has had particularly a hard time staffing is Super Snack, which runs from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights in Thorne. Interim Director of Dining Services Ken Cardone explained that in order for Super Snack to run as it would under pre-COVID-19 circumstances, the program would need to hire 10 new student employees.
“We’re in the same boat as the rest of the industry,” Cardone said. “If you look up and down Maine Street, every business has a sign in the window. Getting staff has been extremely difficult, and it’d be great if we could get a core of students.”
Cardone encouraged students to apply, adding that student workers benefit from the friendly atmosphere of Super Snack.
“Super Snack is a fun shift to work,” Cardone said. “The hours are a little different than usual, but the folks that work Super Snack usually stay for the year, and they always come back.”
As long as potential conflicts regarding the Delta variant don’t arise, if enough students fill the 10 available slots, Cardone said that Super Snack will be ready to operate as usual by September 9.
Super Snack is just one of many dining shifts that’s currently understaffed. Most student dining employees work one or two shifts per week, and there are currently lots of student dining positions to fill.
Additionally, with four long-time staff members retiring from Jack Magee’s in the past year, the Pub’s operations will be limited, serving Fast Track lunch Monday through Friday and Fast Track dinner Sunday through Thursday without dine-in options.
“You know, like all things [with] COVID-19, we have to be ready to pivot,” Cardone said. “We have some amazing staff here that are very committed to what they do, but everybody is doing double duty until we can get orientation completed and start the school year and get the facility staffed.”