A’viands to bring Einstein Bagels, more
Food service company to take over in June
April 13, 2017
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A flurry of new flavors will be presented to the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater campus community beginning this summer.
Food service provider, A’viands, will replace Chartwells as the campus’ dining services provider after more than 20 years of Chartwells services.
A’viands’ contract will begin June 1, according to an email announcement sent to campus.
Graham Street Café will become an Einstein Bagels and Prairie Street Market will become a second Erbert and Gerbert’s.
Uno’s also will be replaced by a restaurant called The Olive, which will have a Mediterranean feel, but still offer flatbreads, paninis and burgers.
“[The Olive] gives us a little bit of a healthier option down there because we heard that a lot is students wish it was healthier, so we’re excited to be able to offer those options,” Angela Meldonian, Associate Director of the University Center said.
Other areas on campus will receive facelifts and see A’viands own in-house brands.
Meal plans and the pricing will remain the same for the most part; however, students will be able to use their meal plans at more locations on campus.
“We’re still working through what those details look like, but we heard the students want to be able to use meal plans in more locations on campus, so we are working through what that is going to look like,” Meldonian said.
A’viands has started touring facilitates at UW-Whitewater and has brought in marketing and IT teams in order to prepare to take over on June 1.
While all employees currently are employed by Chartwells, A’viands will be retaining as many employees as possible. The new contract includes a clause for employees who wish to stay. Employees may do so under the union contract for 90 days with the wage they are currently receiving.
“There will be some people that lose their job, but that will be basically choice for those union workers,” Meldonian said.
Meldonian explained the connection between campus and their employees.
“They have the history, they have the knowledge, a lot of them live in the area and love working here so we want to honor that commitment,” Meldonian said.
As for the management team, A’viands will work with who they want to stay as well as those who chose to stay.
Every seven years, the university goes through a request for proposal (RFP) process. Part of this process includes surveying students to see what they want to see changed.
The RFP is split into a programming piece where companies answer questions about what they will do on campus along, with a financial piece. A committee of students and faculty then evaluate the responses, eventually giving it an averaged total of points out of their total.
Whitewater Student Government (WSG) Speaker of the Senate and RFP committee member Braden Chester said it was important for him to look at the amount of chain restaurants when scoring individual companies.
“On the surface it seems like a great idea but the idea that you hear a lot of the dining people talk about, even with Chartwells, they try to combat is menu fatigue,” Chester said.
A’viands’ proposal mixed in new brands, but did not consist their entire proposal on brands.
“I really appreciate how A’viands wants to work with our community,” WSG President-elect Thomas Kind said. “Especially local growers, they want to work with our garden on campus and integrate that into the menus, they want to work with surrounding counties that have farmers.”
A’viands’ student focus also stood out to Chester and Kind.
A’viands’ proposal included ideas like donating catering dollars to organizations and putting an internship program in Hyland that would give students the opportunity to be managers.
A’viands also has a strong desire to make sure student employment is not lost and increase employment.
“I really believe that they want to be able to use the resource of students on campus,” Kind said.