UOG’s Residence Halls opened a new cafeteria on Saturday, Sept. 2. Located on the second floor of Guma’ta Hall, the dining facility is intended to serve residents who purchased the recently implemented dorm meal plan.
Jonathan Triplett, Residence Hall director, said this is the first time the University is offering a meal plan and the cafeteria to its residents.
“The meal plan is paid by each student,” Triplett said. “Students get lunch and dinner guaranteed everyday, and one meal on Saturday and Sunday.”
The new cafeteria is equipped with food warmers, a station for soups and salads, a water dispenser, chairs, tables, and a 65-inch flat screen television, with anticipated cable connectivity by the end of September.
LSG Sky Chefs caters daily meals and residents are able to utilize the dining area from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for lunch, and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. for dinner.
Prior to the cafeteria’s opening, daily meals for students were prepared in takeout boxes and dropped off at the Residence Life Office for distribution.
David Malon, a resident assistant and UOG student who has stayed in the dorms for four years described the difficulty of the first month of meal planning and his appreciation for having a cafeteria.
However, Malon expressed his concern regarding the maximum capacity of the cafeteria, as it is only able to accommodate 36 residents at a time.
Other residents need to take out food to eat in common areas, especially during dinner time.
“As a last resort for missing the lunch meal at the cafeteria, students can go to Triton Express to get a bento box, sandwich, and a drink,” Malon said.
Happy Fritz, a transfer student from Palau, said she is glad that there is a meal plan, but she feels some things still need improvement.
She expressed multiple concerns for her fellow residents, including conflicting meal and class schedules, a lack of vegetarian options, and the guessing game for the upcoming meal.
Fritz suggested having a weekly update or meal schedule for residents, and to make a separate or alternative meals to accommodate the vegetarian residents.