Company will make capital investment toward new residence facility dining hall
Marquette University has entered into a new contract with food service partner Sodexo, Vice President for Student Affairs Xavier Cole announced today. The six-year contract, which is eligible for six one-year renewals, comes after a yearlong discovery and request for proposals process, which included in-depth discussions with a variety of campus stakeholders and a thorough evaluation of the potential providers and their capabilities, Cole said.
According to Cole, Sodexo was chosen for its proposed student-centric food service and catering program that focuses on quality, consistency and student satisfaction; creativity and student engagement; sustainable programs; and flexibility and inclusion of cultural, dietary and healthy options. Additionally, Sodexo will make a significant capital investment toward the dining hall in the new residence hall facility.
“It became clear through the RFP process that Sodexo is the best choice for Marquette,” said Rick Arcuri, director of business operations and auxiliary services, who was assisted in the RFP effort by Jenny Alexander, director of purchasing. “Their response to the RFP, especially the items requested by our students, was spot on and will lead to better service for the entire university community. We were especially impressed with their commitment to continuous improvement and innovative ideas on how to enhance the dining experience across campus.”
Alexander echoed Arcuri’s enthusiasm. “Sodexo presented a proposal that best addresses Marquette’s current dining and catering needs, and they offered creative yet realistic solutions for the university’s future,” she said. “Sodexo is able to bring a unique understanding of our university community.”
Sodexo’s proposal includes a number of improvements to the university’s overall dining experience, many of which will go into effect for the fall 2017 semester. Among them:
- New 24/7 dining available in McCormick Hall, and then in the new residence hall, as well as extended hours in other select dining facilities.
- Increased flexibility and catering options for student organizations.
- New concept for the Lunda Room called Innovation Kitchen, where chefs will cook for and with students, faculty and staff.
- One free meal each semester for every faculty and staff member.
- Increased focus on marketing and signage, including digital displays in all residence halls.
- Dedicated, Sodexo-employed sustainability coordinator focused solely on dining services.
- Food trucks and/or pop-up restaurants brought to campus on a regular basis.
- Expansion of Mindful, Sodexo’s nutrition and healthy eating and living program.
Sodexo is an award-winning international food services and facilities management company that partners with nearly 850 colleges and universities throughout North America. The company specializes in culinary and catering services; nutrition, health and wellness solutions; and vending operations.
The selection committee to choose Marquette’s dining vendor included: Arcuri, Mary Janz, Linda Lee, Jim McMahon, Jen Reid and Neal Wucherer from the Division of Student Affairs; Mike Jahner from the Office of Facilities, Planning and Management; and Alexander and Mel Austin from the Office of Finance. The team worked with Porter Khouw Consulting on the project.