by Kayla Perry
After nearly four months of construction, Laurentian University’s newly renovated Great Hall will be revealed on August 27, 2014. Benjamin Demianiuk, Director of Housing and Food Services, gave Lambda a sneak peek of the Great Hall.
The hall, which is now complete with the Marche-style all-you-can-eat cafeteria, seats roughly 300 people, with a combination of booths, tables and bar style seats. Extra outlets have been added along the walls to allow for charging electronics. Laurentian’s free wifi can also be accessed inside the hall.
Along with a grill, salad bar, and self-serve soup station, the cafeteria also features a pasta station, custom-made pizza area, breakfast station, self-serve desert area and self-serve refreshments station.
The cafeteria will accommodate vegan and gluten free diets, and all meals are made to order.
Although portions may be smaller than in past years, Demianiuk said the amount a student takes from the kitchen area and into the seating area is unlimited, so long as you do not exit the enclosed area. All meals will also be served on real china, which Demianiuk says will reduce the Great Hall’s waste.
The new Great Hall comes as a result of a renewed one-year contract between Laurentian and Armark, and includes a newly-enforced mandatory meal plan for all students staying in Laurentian residences, with the exception of the Mature Student Residence. The residences of Thorneloe University, Huntington University and University of Sudbury are also exempt from the mandatory meal plans, given that these three residences belong to federated universities.
While a meal ticket is required to gain access to the cafeteria and sitting area, a one-time meal pass can be purchased at the front desk of the hall, for those students without meal plans. For students who do not wish to purchase an meal ticket, there is a 70 person enclosed seating area to the side of the Great Hall, which will be open 24/7. This area will also have access to a smaller cafeteria station, where Toppers pizza will be available for purchase.
The cafeteria will be open on weekdays between 7 am and 10 pm, and on weekends between 9 am and 9 pm.
The cafeteria’s menu will also change regularly, and can be accessed online.
“There is a four week rotating menu, so we won’t see the same foods all the time,” said Demianiuk. “(The menu) will change so the food is always new and exciting. There’s a lot of flexibility.”