Full-service Starbucks in library holds opening ceremony

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Students wait in line for their afternoon coffee at the new Starbucks located in the University Library Wednesday. 

Taylor Robinson

A line of students, faculty and staff wrapped around the first floor of the University Library Tuesday for the official ribbon cutting of the new, fully licensed Starbucks.

The smell of coffee filled the main floor as the crowd enjoyed free coffee samples, free snacks and played games like Plinko for prizes, while others stood in line for their favorite Starbucks drink.

The first 100 people in line for the Starbucks received tickets for a goodie bag, which was filled with a Starbucks cup, free espresso beans, snacks and coupons. 

Hannah Jager, a junior communication studies major, was among those who waited in the long line for a goodie bag at the opening.

“I’m really excited to be here,” Jager said. “Everyone is excited, and it’s awesome we finally got an official Starbucks.”

Kenneth Burhanna, the interim dean of University Libraries, welcomed the crowd of students and faculty, thanking those involved in the process for making the new Starbucks a reality.

“I truly believe the library is where the magic happens,” Burhanna said. “Here it is, the magical Starbucks.”

The librarians’ offices have since been relocated to the fifth floor of the library, and Burhanna took time in his speech to thank them for their flexibility and openness to changes.

Daniel Oswald, the Undergraduate Student Government president, thanked the administration for what they have done for moving Kent State forward.

“We are moving forward with this progressive moment,” Oswald said. “Having this service is pivotal to a stress-free zone and to help with those late nights.”

Shay Little, the vice president of student affairs, said they chose to bring the Starbucks to campus from a request proposal from food vendors. In this request, each company proposed a fully licensed Starbucks, not just a “proudly serving” location that only serves select popular menu items.

“Our students who gave feedback indicated strong interest in this,” Little said.

Little said a library is often the most desired place for a coffee shop. She said they expect students to gravitate toward the new shop because of the brand recognition that comes with a fully licensed Starbucks, as well as the proximity the library provides. 

In preparation for the new Starbucks, all student workers underwent full training to become baristas.

“Students had several weeks of training to be fully trained,” Little said. “I think students will enjoy their experience at this Starbucks.”

During the ribbon-cutting ceremony, it was announced another full service Starbucks is expected on campus in the spring.

Taylor Robinson is the libraries reporter. Contact her at [email protected]