Student dining begins the return to normalcy


Mason Savoia

Students dining in Convo among the pandemic.

Mason Savoia

Following the return of seating on Jan. 30 and the newer return to self service on Feb. 12, the Ashland University Convocation Center is looking to make a number of changes in the upcoming months this school year. 

Changes to service, such as the green box exchange, have been used in Convo since the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year started, with emphasis on keeping germ-spreading and social distancing  a high priority.

Service manager and supervisor Christine Litten believes as long as the government issues a call for it, dining services will return to something resembling what it was before the pandemic and the changes that were rolled out with it.

“We want to see the kids in here socializing again in the dining hall, ” Litten said. “There were restrictions;  food could be served, but there was no self service because of cross contamination issues.” 

The government issued whether things could or could not function the way they used to.

Green boxes have been used throughout the school year in order to maintain social distancing while allowing students to get the food and meals they need each day. If Convo is to return to seating and self service full time, the staff believes there is a strong possibility that the boxes  will no longer be needed for socially distanced dining .

“I think it’s based on individual preference. There are still students out there who are fearful of socializing,” Litten said. “That’s why we allow that to continue. It’s based on customer needs.” 

With seating being watched closely, Litten hopes that students will once again be social in Convo. 

“Once the numbers [of students using green boxes] go down, then we’ll probably discontinue the use of the green containers.”

Litten wants the students to enjoy their time dining and socializing in Convo, and is hoping that the governor of Ohio will make a call sometime before next school year to allow for a better time for the students.

“It’s all about Ohio’s restrictions. Things are quickly changing. They lifted curfews and it seems like change is in the air,” Litten said. “We jumped on it as soon as we could—the very next day. I think the kids miss the socialization.”