With a goal to enhance the student experience, Belmont Dining Services, provided by Sodexo, will launch several new initiatives this fall as well as open two new popular chain restaurant locations on campus.
An express version of McAlister’s Deli, serving the popular chain’s top 25 best-selling items, opens Aug. 12 in the former spot of Buzzy’s candy store on Belmont Blvd. While the chain has expanded into Middle Tennessee in recent years with shops in Brentwood, Cool Springs and Murfreesboro, this will be the first McAlister’s in Nashville.
Meanwhile, a Papa John’s branch will be added to the former Quizno’s spot in Curb Cafe. The pizza shop will offer both eight-inch individual size pizzas as well as 16-inch pies. The site will open for business on Monday, Aug. 19.
Director of Dining Services Kyle Grover said, “This past year Dining Services hosted four student focus groups, and we asked students what food options they wanted on campus. Adding McAlister’s and Papa John’s will meet the students’ needs.”
The cafeteria, located in the Gabhart Student Center, adds a Simple Servings station that offers allergy sufferers (gluten, lactose, shellfish, etc.) meal options free of instigating allergens. In addition, Sodexo has partnered with MyFitnessPal.com to include more than 1,200 recipes on the site so diners can scan an item in line and immediately have access to nutritional information on the website. Sodexo is also instituting Qbot, a rewards program that offers free products when users reach certain pre-set milestones in purchases.
To give students even more options for dining, Bruin Bucks can be used at several off-campus vendors, allowing students to enjoy meals at locations beyond the cafeteria, Curb Cafe, Bruin Grounds, What’s Bruin and Corner Court. In addition to using Bruin Bucks in Belmont’s on campus eateries and pharmacy, students can use the system at Subway, Chago’s, Kalamata’s, Noshville and Papa John’s as well as at the new campus locations of Papa John’s and McAlister’s. An announcement will be made soon regarding new additions to the Bruin Bucks program.
All of the new options are a precursor to Fall 2015 when the new Academic and Dining Services complex is scheduled to open. Fred Puffenberger, senior director of auxiliary enterprises, said, “We are excited about the opportunity to offer the additional on-campus food options to our student body. These additions along with expanding our partnerships with several new off campus vendor Bruin Bucks partners is another step in the continuation of enhancing the student experience here at Belmont.”