Upgraded food cart makes its debut

Whitney Gibson

Students and faculty gathered at Rockwell Hall this week for the Provost’s Leadership Academy’s unveiling of the Dining Services food cart. The upgraded food cart will be located by Rockwell and Bowman Halls from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday.

The PLA is a group of incoming freshmen who have been selected to advocate improvements around campus, and is responsible for making the food cart a reality.

Steven Greene, sophomore managerial marketing major, is an alumnus of PLA, and was on the team who pitched the food cart idea to Provost Robert Frank and Frank’s committee.

“We sent out surveys electronically to students last spring, asking what buildings they thought needed more food options,” Greene said. “Over 800 students responded.”

Greene said PLA then studied where the most foot traffic on campus was to select where the cart would be. Bowman and Rockwell Halls had the most.

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Frank expressed his satisfaction with PLA and dining services for working together to make the food cart happen.

“Dining Services did an excellent job of listening to the students and making their ideas come to life,” he said. “This is Kent State at its best.”

Greene said he agrees.

“This is a testament as to how much power students can have on campus,” Frank said. “We worked hard with Tia Protopapa and the marketing team and made it happen.”

Julie Young, sophomore fashion merchandising major and alumna of PLA, said she is especially pleased with the food cart.

“As a fashion student who spends so much time in Rockwell, it means a lot to me to have a food place that’s close by,” she said.

Ivy Lumpkin, senior applied communications major, also said she loves the food cart idea.

“It’s nice to have a place nearby that offers actual food that you can just grab and go,” she said.

The success of the food cart has slowly picked up speed since it first debuted in August.

Jesse Dolar, senior interpersonal communications major, works at the food cart and says business has been steady.

“At first it was slow especially since students couldn’t use their meal plan,” Dolar said.

“But now, it’s picking up. Once it catches on, I’m sure more people will use it.”

Melanie Shaves, sophomore fashion design major, said she is glad she can use her meal plan now.

“I think it’s a great idea, especially since there isn’t anywhere close we could go to without spending money,” she said. “I’m positive that I’ll use it a lot.”

Contact Whitney Gibson [email protected].