By Kylie Stoltzfus
During the first week back on campus, students expressed concerns regarding the availability of Dining Services. A petition circulated around the Millersville community, accumulating nearly 1,500 student signatures, according to change.org.
At a town hall meeting held by Millersville’s Student Government Association (SGA) in response to student concerns, Edward Nase, Director of Dining Services, explained that the delays in Dining Services were due to a shortage of student workers. According to Leizel Schlott, SGA President, Dining Services is currently operating at approximately one-third of its normal student worker capacity.
As a means of recruiting more student workers, dining has increased their student pay from $9 per hour to $11 per hour, with an additional $1 per hour for each hour worked after 8 p.m. and on weekends. Student-workers also receive a free meal in addition to their meal plan swipes.
“There’s a new reality that we are all dealing with. Yes, we’ve returned [to campus], we’re going to class, dining is open, but we still are working in a pandemic world,” says Nase. “We live in a world of never-ending change… We all have to change and we are looking for your assistance and participation in that.”
Nase emphasized that universities across the nation are experiencing similar shortages and service interruptions in their dining operations. Universities are experiencing staffing shortages, reduced hours and limited offerings.
“That’s not an excuse, that’s reality. If you look all over this country, it’s reality. The hospitality industry has been just devastated in trying to find employees,” Nase says. “It’s not what we want, it’s what we’ve been dealt.”
“SGA has been meeting with Ed Nase,” Schlott says. “There’s a lot of movement on changes for the combos [and] what those are going to look like.. [Dining Services] are hearing the concerns and they are working on it.”
“Be patient with us. We are having new students come our way by the middle of September when we know there’s an influx of student applications. We’ll get there,” says Nase.
Student worker applications are available online. For more information, visit https://www.millersville.edu/dining.