2.3.23: Dining Services Update

Dining Services provides updates on beginning-of-semester adjustments.

Over the last two weeks, Dining Services has begun new operating patterns based on the closure of the Clayton University Center. During this time, we have had some challenges and we wanted to take a moment to address those issues and let you know what steps we are taking to improve. The start of any semester is hectic as students learn new class schedules and patterns; the closure of the Clayton UC created more complexities to work through.

We thank everyone who has participated in the dining program this semester and provided feedback about your experience. We have heard you and value your input and want to continue to understand your questions and concerns. Please use this newly launched dining feedback form to help us better serve you.

We continue to ask for your patience as we work to optimize your experience and find appropriate solutions.

What we’ve heard: “Are there any new additions to the dining offerings?” “When will the new dining options be available?”

What we’re doing: Within the next month, Lucy’s Cafe in Linderman Library will be opening and a new food truck (The Talon), likely to be situated at the Clayton University Center flagpole area, will be introduced. Also, a Yo-Kai hot noodle bowl vending machine has been installed and will be operational within the next few weeks for diners on the Mountaintop campus.

What we’ve heard: “The retail operations are crowded and the lines are too long.”

What we’re doing: Moving the retail locations from the Food Court to the Hawk’s Nest required adjustments to be made to offerings. Identifying the most popular options among students helped us prioritize the choices for the limited space available. The new options include Chick ‘n Bap, Mein Bowl, Tres Habaneros (replaced by Salsa Rico). Also added to Hawk’s Nest was Good Batter, a new late-night concept.

Wait times at Hawk’s Nest, the Grind, Common Grounds and other retail operations have significantly decreased as the staff has become more efficient in preparation and service. Students have quickly adapted to the new kiosk ordering system at the Hawk’s Nest and our staff is also acclimating to the new process for ordering, paying, and picking up. We appreciate the students’ patience during the opening and appreciate those who are respectful of the new processes we have implemented.

We have expanded hours of operation in many locations and will continue to look at additional opportunities to do so. GrubHub ordering is also available to all Lehigh students at no cost. Ordering in advance through GrubHub can save you time.

What we’ve heard: “Rathbone is crowded.”

What we’re doing: Rathbone continues to be a very popular all-you-care-to-eat dining location. With some recent operational adjustments, we have seen Rathbone dinner numbers decreasing over this past week. Lines at Rathbone are longest during the 6:30 pm-8:00 pm time period so students may consider shifting their visits. (Dinner hours are 4:30 pm to 9:00 pm.)

One initiative that will aid in enhancing the student dining experience is the addition of the new "Rathbone Express" line which expedites wait times for students who are busy and do not wish to eat in the dining room. Students may enter the Express line, collect an ecoContainer, grab their food and go.

Although we have not observed issues with the lunch hours, please note another lunchtime option includes taking advantage of the ability to use meal credits at our food trucks. Both the Fud Truk and Simply Skewered are located at STEPS concourse and available weekdays 10:30 am - 3:00 pm (weather permitting).

What we’ve heard: “Vegetarian options on campus are limited.”

What we’re doing: Both student restaurants (Rathbone and Brodhead) and all retail locations have a variety of vegetarian options available:

  • Rathbone features the popular “Veg Out” station that exclusively offers vegetarian entrees and side dishes and both Brodhead and Rathbone offer a black bean burger at lunch and dinner.
  • Global Cafe is a popular retail outlet for sushi and poke bowls, the Hideaway Cafe features smoothie bowls for lunch, Common Grounds offers a create-your-own salad bar and the new Hawk’s Nest has become a popular destination for Chick-n-Bap's falafel rice bowls and Tres Harbeneros’ veggie burritos.
  • Additionally, vegetarian sandwiches are available at Common Grounds, the Grind, and the Fud Truk.
  • Students are able to view daily menus via the Dining Services webpage.
  • Any student who is having difficulty finding food that meets their specific dietary needs, should contact our campus dietician, Keri Lasky (e00322@lehigh.edu) for assistance.

We thank you for your patience and understanding as we continue to gather feedback and address areas of opportunity. Rest assured that the Dining Services staff continues to evaluate patterns, usage, and challenges on a daily basis. We are confident that your dining experience will continue to improve as we make changes.