After four months of being closed for renovations, the Student Union Servery and it’s adjoining dining area reopened last week to rave reviews.
“I come to the cafeteria everyday. It’s really nice. I like the new food and it cooks faster,” said Sam Hutsell, a student in the Chrysler College Automotive Program.
Hutsell isn’t alone in liking the changes and improvements to the serving area.
“The students are really, really happy,” said Hayley Holmes, Campus Food Services Manager. “The entire food services staff is excited about the physical changes as well as the additional services we’re able to offer our students, faculty and staff.”
The serving area features new equipment including an extended salad bar, a dessert case and a new grill area that allows customers to get made-to-order burgers, chicken breast and tilapia every weekday.
“It’s flowing. We’re getting people through a lot quicker since we can do some much to-order at the grill,” Holmes said, and the new programmable grill means consistent cooking every time. “It’s fresh, right off the grill.”
The new equipment also allows more food to be kept in the serving area so food service staff don’t have to replenish as often.
There are still a few more changes coming to the cafeteria in the coming weeks including more improvements to the new drink station and new trays with the OSU Institute of Technology logo.
There are also plans to remodel the entrance to the Servery and install digital menu boards in the future, said James Byrd, Director of Student Union and Auxiliary Services.
“We’re continuing to upgrade and eventually we’ll replace and redo the kitchen area,” he said.
The much-needed Servery renovation project stayed within the $640,000 budget and was in the planning stages for two years, Byrd said.
“The Student Union was built in 1989. Most of that equipment was original to the building,” he said, and this new serving equipment is safer and much more energy efficient. “I think it enables Hayley and her crew to do more, be more creative and offer more to the students.”
The weekday hours for the grill are 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and the sandwich and salad bar is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
In addition to the equipment, the serving area has new lighting, ceiling; and tile floors and walls, including tiles etched with Pistol Pete and the OSUIT logo.
“I love it. It’s hopefully more comfortable to the students,” Byrd said. “We wanted something that looked nice, but was easy to maintain and easy to clean. Hopefully this will last another 20 years.”