Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Faculty asked to volunteer in dining halls amid continuing staff shortage

October 19, 2021
<p>Vegan and vegetarian options are prepared at &quot;Veg Out&quot; at Case Dining Hall on Sept. 4, 2018. Culinary Services workers, along with 700 Residential and Hospitality Services student employees were placed on leave starting Oct. 4, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.</p>

Vegan and vegetarian options are prepared at "Veg Out" at Case Dining Hall on Sept. 4, 2018. Culinary Services workers, along with 700 Residential and Hospitality Services student employees were placed on leave starting Oct. 4, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Photo by Matt Schmucker | The State News

Residential and Hospitality Services, or RHS, are now asking non-RHS faculty members to volunteer in the campus dining halls due to a continuing staff shortage.

“In order to mitigate these shortages, we have altered dining operations and 132 full-time RHS administrative team members have been asked to work eight hours in dining halls each week,” an email from InsideMSU said. “That said, our residential dining halls could use your help.”

Related: Dining hours reduced in some halls due to staff shortages

Related: Dining hall closures met with petitions, letters from students, parents

RHS Chief Communications Officer Kat Cooper said this is a fully voluntary request, and nobody will be obligated to work. Those who volunteer will not receive pay or any other monetary benefits.

“We do appreciate those who are able to (volunteer),” Cooper said.

The RHS staff shortage has already cut dinner services at two dining halls, and modified hours at all facilities.

Despite this, Cooper said the department is slowly making progress towards pre-pandemic levels of staffing. According to Cooper, the culinary staff is only about 50 employees short in a given night, compared to the 90 student deficit earlier in the year.


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