New VT dining center to open this fall

New facility located on the academic side of VT's campus.

March 16—The wait for the new dining hall—which will be located on the academic side of Virginia Tech's Blacksburg campus—is expected to end next semester.

Turner Place, the newest 35,000-square-foot dining area, is slated to open this fall, with multiple restaurants and services.

In 2005, Dining Services collaborated with Virginia Tech officials to determine a location for Turner Place. Initially, Johnston Student Center was considered. “The infrastructure just wasn’t large enough for the scope of the student population and the availability of the use of meal plans,” said Ted Faulkner, director of Dining Services.

Porter Khouw Consulting, Inc.—a national foodservice management consulting and design firm — was hired in 2007 to interview students and solicit information from them so Dining Services could gather ideas regarding the building for Turner Place. “Out of that survey, students said they would love something on the academic side, which confirmed our thoughts,” Faulkner said.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Maryland will begin offering weekly specials at all of its dining halls this semester, The Diamond Back reports.

The weekday specials will allow Dining Services to offer past menu items that students miss as well as new dishes students have been requesting, according to a spokesperson.

Students can find out which specials are being offered each week via dining hall table tents as well as through Dining Services’ social media. During select weeks, the specials may reflect a particular theme, such as Taste of the South.

Read the full story via...

Ideas and Innovation
email computer screen

Communication is key, and [managers] are busy too. One tip I picked up from another director was to label my subject line with the header “action,” “information” or “response” followed by a brief description of the email contents. That way they can filter through their inboxes during their busy days to know which emails need their attention immediately and which they can save to read later.

Ideas and Innovation
pinterest hand phone

We like to offer a constantly changing menu. Last year, I started a Pinterest account—not for marketing, but for my team, so that they can look to the recipes for inspiration and try something new. We tried protein cookies based onto a Pinterest recipe, and our residents loved them.

Ideas and Innovation
coal creek student salad bar

When I was visiting Minneapolis Public Schools, I saw that they have these cool signs on top of their salad bars. As soon as we got back, we re-created them. They are big and branded, and have the portion requirements. They say “Taste something new today” on one side, and we support our local farmers on the other. They help the bars look fresh and delish, and attract students’ eyes.

FSD Resources