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Dining Centers Implement New COVID Procedures

Written by on August 27, 2020

Photo courtesy to ISU Event Management, Dining, and Hospitality Facebook page

NORMAL, Ill- Illinois State University has made changes campus-wide due to the COVID-19 pandemic. One of the areas that has been impacted has been the campus dining centers.

Day to day operations now have a much different feel than previous years.

When preparing food, staff members are required to wear face coverings at all times.

Staff members have been required to attend extensive safety training sessions in addition to reporting symptoms and temperatures on a daily basis.

The dining centers will only be open to students with meal plans for the fall semester.

Inside students are required to wear masks and exhibit proper physical distancing. Students can eat inside at specifically marked areas that are to be cleaned after each use. Plexi-glass barriers and contact-less serving methods are being used to provide students with food.

A temporary satellite dining center has been added at the Bone Student Center to provide meal plan holders another convenient location to eat on campus.

Assistant Director of Marketing, Training and Hospitality Erin Watts has been impressed on how ISU students have handled the new procedures.

“We’ve been really impressed with the students and how quickly they’ve adjusted to the new layouts and practices,” said Watts. “At all of our facilities we’ve been really pleased that students have been wearing face coverings and using the new dining areas properly.”

Meals are also being provided for students that have tested positive for COVID-19 with precautions being taken to ensure safety and the privacy of the affected students.

“We provide lunch and dinner daily, as well as a continental breakfast,” said Watts. “It is a contact-less drop-off. We don’t know the students that are in quarantine, we don’t have any of their information. We just know the location to drop it off and we leave it outside the door.”

ISU has extended their deadline for students to change their meal plans from Aug. 31 to Sept. 10, 2020.