BRENDAN HORAN ’21
Trinity College has made several changes to its food services for the 2018-2019 academic year as a result of a collaboration between the Student Government Association (SGA) and Chartwells Dining Services. The process began last spring when the SGA reached out to Chartwells as part of its initiative on improving student life. Focus groups were held in order to gauge student needs.
Following a comprehensive assessment of student needs, new meal plans were added including the 15-5 and 19-10 Flex Plans, allowing students more access to the Cave and the Bistro through meal swipes as well as flex dollars. Other new additions include two new Block Plans which allot meals on a semester-long basis, as opposed to a week. According to Chartwell Director of Dining Services Paul Vermeal, nearly 400 students have already switched to the new plans.
In addition to the new meal plans, there are new food options being offered at both the Cave and the Bistro based on feedback from surveys sent to students over the summer by the SGA. New stations are being tested at the Bistro on a rotating basis, including a barbecue concept, called “Smoked,” “2 Taco,” a Mexican food station, and “Bowl Life,” a build-your-own-bowl station.
Additionally, there is now a variety of fresh produce available for purchase in the Cave. According to SGA President Kristina Miele, “the new additions include fresh produce such as chopped veggies, avocados, organic arugula, fresh hummus, and fresh salsa.” So far, there has been a very positive response from Trinity Students.”
Vermeal echoed this sentiment stating, “I’ve received positive feedback, especially around the improvements to the product line in the Cave. The vegan breakfast option and the additional hours for the Rooted and Smoothie stations are also being well received.” However, Vermeal did not rule out additional changes in the future, which would be based on feedback from a survey sent out to students at the beginning of October.