By Nicole Curcio
Changes have been made this semester inside the Hillwood Café, as reported on by The Pioneer in the Oct. 5 issue. The area that was formerly strictly for pizza has now been revamped, adding a fresh fruit smoothie bar. The refrigerator under the sushi counter has added prepared sandwiches, salads, parfaits, and fresh fruit cups. These items used to be located in the back left refrigerator, near the coffee and tea counter. The back left refrigeration section is now filled with a variety of bottled drinks, along with bowls of fresh fruit on the bottom shelf, no longer holding the pre-packaged items.
The change in location of packaged items has led students to believe there has been a decrease in the amount and variety of food. Edward Taraskewich, resident district manager of Aramark Foods, said that is not the case. There is a consistent amount of grab-and-go salads, wraps, and sandwiches compared to prior semesters, according to Taraskewich.
“Our team has also expanded the variety of fruit and dessert items in the grab-and-go section and added toppings for yogurt and custard desserts,” Taraskewich said. “The change in location was made for greater accessibility.”
If there is not a prepared salad or wrap to the liking of a student in the display case, there is the salad/wrap station on the opposite side of the sushi station. But, the line for the salad bar no longer runs parallel to the cashier lines, as it did last semester. It is now on the opposite side, closer to the grill. Not all students are appreciative of the change. “The salad line is still long and overrated,” said Marvin Johnson, a senior economics major. The salad bar prepares orders between 11 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., according to one of the servers.
Hours of operation at the café have stayed the same: Mon. through Thurs., 7a.m. – 7 p.m., Fri. 8 a.m. – 2 p.m., and closed throughout the weekend. For commuters, the hours of operation are not a problem because their classes usually end before 7 p.m. For residents on campus, this schedule is difficult. Theatre lighting professor Mike Gugliotti said it is difficult for rehearsing theatre students to find food on the weekends, especially on the academic side of campus. “It was so hard for them to grab food during their dinner break because nothing in Hillwood was open,” he said.
Though students could go to Winnick, rehearsals are in the Little Theatre or the Theatre, Dance, and Arts Management building. Oftentimes, the rehearsals run beyond the hours of operation of the dining hall.
The End Zone is an option for late dining on campus, operating Mon. through Sat. 8 p.m. to 1 a.m., and Sun. 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. “Additionally, this semester the Aramark team has updated the End Zone menu and hot entrées have been added back to the grill menu,” Taraskewich said. “The whole Aramark team is proud of the student centered changes.”