C/STORES ON CAMPUS:
Sin and Salvation at Riverside
There are a few contrasts with the Scotty’s c/store at the School of Medicine at the University of California – Riverside. It has both indoor and outdoor aspects — and a product mix that has been described as “sin and salvation.”
“It is a hybrid convenience store, simply because not only is it unusual in terms of its design, but it is also unusual because of its product mix,” said Cheryl Garner, executive director of Dining, Conference and Catering Services. “When we opened the facility, everything in Scotty’s School of Medicine is what I would describe as a health halo. That might be organic, or all-natural or no GMOs or low-fat or under 500 calories or it could be gluten-free. We actually tried to hit on multiples of those special criteria, and that is how we actually built the product mix. The location also has a pad that allows us to put a food truck at the same patio location. So it is kind of an interesting little symbiotic relationship that they have.”
The location of the store, which opened in May 2014, was not the only inspiration for the “healthy halo” of products. “The reality is that we had wanted to pilot that concept on campus,” said Garner. “We have done market research in the past to check interest of our student body and our faculty and staff in terms of organics and healthier cuisine. It wasn’t huge in our market research, but it has been five years since we did our master plan, and we thought we should test it.” ...
when Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, La., was approached by its dining partner, Sodexo, to open a new convenience store concept in a failing game room in a prime loca-tion in the Student Union, it jumped at the chance.
“We had an old-fashioned game room that had all of the video games and pool tables,” said Brenda Haskins, executive director of Auxiliary Services with the university. “It was an ideal space that was in the center of the Student Union. It was once a very profitable business for the university, but today's students have video games on their telephones and on their computers in their rooms. It had dwindled to where we were doing very little business. When you look at the square footage that was there, from a university standpoint, we wanted to put something in that space that the students would see as an asset or a service to them. When Sodexo first approached the university about a convenience store, we were really delighted that they had that idea, because we had been thinking about what to put in that space.”
Russell Barrios, general manager with Sodexo, first heard about the new concept, “The Grid at,” at a regional company meeting. “They were looking for a pilot site,” he said. “Fortunately enough, Brenda likes to be out front on these types of things, and she was very receptive and wanted to be the one that opened the concept. The space happened to be available. We presented The Grid, and she was very excited about it. We put some plans and renderings together and worked with the maintenance staff on campus. Everyone agreed it was feasible.”...
Students at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth have a new student center on campus that was designed to be one that they could truly call their own.
“I refer to it as a student center,” said Craig Allen, director of Housing and Residence Life, of the as-yet-unnamed facility, otherwise known only as the multipurpose building. “Whereas on our campus we have the Brown Lupton University Union, our union, much like other universities’ unions, is for the entire university community. The union has outside conference groups, faculty symposiums, public speakers, dining and administrative offices. It is all things to all people.”
He continued, “This building that we just built is truly a student center. There is one small suite of offices for Sorority and Fraternity Life, but otherwise, there is no office space in the building. It has student lounges, student dining, and we intend to keep it that way. It will not be available for outside groups to book space. It will simply be for students to lounge and study and meet as student groups and have student functions.” ...
If things had worked out as he had originally planned, Roger Disher, campus executive chef with Chartwells at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), would have been a music teacher.
“I realized that that wasn’t quite going to pan out for me,” he said. “I did some soul searching, and every job I had ever had at that point had been in food service. I thought that it was what I wanted to do.”
As a child, Disher learned a lot about cooking from his grandmother. “When I was a kid, our grandmother came to live with us when my grandfather passed, and she did a lot of cooking because my mother worked. She took over the cooking, and I used to sit and watch her. She used to show me some things.”