University Dining Services has updated their safety protocols in compliance with Covid-19 preventative measures to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff for the Fall 2020 semester.

 Since the first outbreak of the pandemic back in March, both the university and its facilities have worked endlessly to prepare for the influx of students returning for the fall semester. With a new group of freshmen, along with returning students attending online and in person classes, dining halls, campus restaurants and convenience stores are operating at almost full capacity once again.

 To ensure that students and staff coming in and out of these facilities are safe, Dining Services has eliminated all self-serve items, implemented more frequent cleaning and sanitation of high-touch areas like door handles and floor decals denoting 6 ft apart have been installed in all dining locations. Dining staff is also monitoring peak meal times to reduce overcrowding in dining halls and restaurants.

 “We are monitoring traffic during peak meal times to ensure dining halls do not get overly crowded,” Tiffany Gonzales, Aramark Marketing Manager for SFA said. “Reduced seating in our on-campus restaurants has helped with this as well.”

 Campus dining employees are also taking measures to ensure that other staff members and those who dine in or take to-go from various locations are safe as well. All dining personnel are required to complete a daily health screening and undergo daily temperature monitoring at the beginning of their shift, as well as any time they return from a break or clocking back in.

 “Facial coverings are required for all dining personnel [and] our staff practices social distancing from each other and our guests whenever possible,” Gonzales said. “[We have also] increased [the] number of sanitizing stations and [implement] frequent handwashing.”

 Facial coverings are also required to enter the dining hall and while ordering any food items. Masks can only be removed when you are seated and eating.      

 To reduce the amount of time spent in dining halls and restaurants, Dining Services has expanded their grab-and-go and to-go options. On-campus restaurant locations are also utilizing the campus mobile ordering app Grubhub to help reduce traffic during peak meal times.

 Campus Dining Services has worked to not only implement these changes within their facilities, but also on communicating the changes with students and staff to give them peace of mind.

“[We have] increased communication in regard to safety protocols in the form of signs, posters, floor clings, as well as on social media,” Gonzales said.

My name is Jocelyn Bradford and I am a junior at SFASU. I am an English secondary education major, but I have always had a passion for writing. I currently work full time as a service manager for Chipotle and I am also a writing tutor at the AARC.

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