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Chartwells releases plan for college operations in 2021 and beyond

Ghost kitchens and catering options for small groups are some of the features the food-management company plans to roll out starting next school year.
college students wearing masks
Photograph: Shutterstock

Chartwells Higher Ed has released its "Path Forward" plan, which outlines how it plans to handle foodservice at the more than 300 colleges and universities it serves in 2021 and beyond.

"Path Forward" lays out the innovations that Chartwells Higher Ed looks to roll out in the future, including nontraditional meal plans customized to changing student needs, ghost kitchens, new catering options for small gatherings and new technology to help protect students and maintain safety protocols.

The plan is based off of findings from a recent survey Chartwells Higher Ed conducted with colleges and universities. Results from the survey revealed that over 50% of respondents are interested in mobile ordering and pickup retail that eliminates checkouts and want options for on campus delivery. Almost 70% of respondents are looking for ways to continue to offer takeout in resident dining as well as reopen resident dining halls. 

Over 40% of survey respondents also believe enrollment for the fall 2021 will be similar to 2020, while 30% expect to return to 2019 enrollment figures or see them increase by as much as 10%. By fall 2021, nearly 60% of respondents believe on-campus housing will return to full capacity levels.

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