Food is comfort, wherever it’s found


Mary-Lynn Retassie

Sophomore cummuter Jen Hilvko uses the commuter lounge’s microwave to warm speghetti from home.

Lucy Li, Copy Editor

Although Pitt-Johnstown campus food may not always have what students desire, they always manage to find something to satisfy their empty stomachs. Plus, if nothing else looks good, there’s always pizza.

Sodexo Services’ Director Derek Krajc said the pizza stand and the grill are the students’ go-to comfort food in the dining hall.

“It’s not necessarily the food, but the station. Students would go to these stations (if they didn’t find anything else they liked).” Krajc said.

Another thing students like, according to Krajc, is food served on theme nights.

“Theme nights (are) non-stop, from when we open to when we close,” he said.

The last theme night was meat lover’s night Sept. 13.

Another busy feeding station on campus is the Daily Grind in Blackington Hall.

“(The rush hours) are about every 45 minutes in between students’ classes,” said Debbie Casteel, who works at the Daily Grind.

“(The most popular drink) would be white chocolate mocha and white chocolate Frappuccino, in all seasons,

“(The food that students usually get) are the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, the salads and a lot of fruits,” Casteel said.

Although students would be able to find something to eat most of the time on campus, there are times when they are too lazy to walk to get food, or when they’re hungry but no dining place is open on campus, such as early mornings on weekends.

Freshman student Jessica Lipsey said that, when she came to campus, her parents had packed her snacks, such as Cheez-It crackers, trail mixes and granola bars.

She said that she normally doesn’t make food in her dorm, but her roommate does.

“My roommate would make instant rice, and mix it with butter,” she said.

Lipsey said she usually just gets food at the Student Union, and that her go-to food is salad.

In order to better serve the students, dining hall managers have been asking students’ feedback, Krajc said.

“The feedback helps a lot. (It gives us a sense of) what is being liked and what students would want to see more.

“We run a weekly rotational menu, and we try not to repeat the menu too often.” 

“We have brand new soda machines, and we added flavor shots and tailored the variety to see the (students’) feedback,” Krajc said.

“We also added the Farmer’s Market to the dining hall. It’s open during lunch and dinner.

“Many students don’t realize this, but they can go there with the meal swipe they used to get in (the dining hall). 

“Students are welcome to come (to the Farmer’s Market) to eat, (and it’s also) an opportunity for them to grab something on the go,” Krajc said.