By REBECCA SOARES
The Pita Pit is Conestoga College’s healthy food alternative, but it creates a pit of people piled in line. The eatery has become a popular food choice among faculty, staff and students, but its increasing popularity has caused service problems.
On Oct. 2, Conestoga’s College Council meeting took place in the Guild Room of the Welcome Centre. During the meeting Dianna Fong-Lee, the co-ordinator of Conestoga’s occupational therapist assistant and physiotherapist assistant programs, raised the issue of decreased efficiency and increased traffic at the school’s Pita Pit.
“There’s an issue that with all the high school students doing tournaments at the college –and it’s good that they come, we want them there – but Pita Pit becomes increasingly busy and for employees and students who are all on a clock, they end up waiting 30 minutes,” said Fong-Lee. She asked Conestoga Students Inc. (CSI) President Aimee Calma if her association was responsible for the eatery, and when she was told CSI was, she asked Calma if there was anything that could be done about the slow service.
Calma said, “We’re trying to work out things still as it’s just the beginning of the year but we can definitely look into improving things.”
Joclyn Batista, a second-year BScN student waiting in line at Pita Pit, said, “There definitely needs to be some way of improving it. Students don’t just use the break to grab food, they try to study or work on assignments and when you spend 30 minutes or more in line I’m losing valuable time I could have used for my education.”
There were suggestions offered at the meeting about how to improve the situation, including an increase in staff and a mobile order pickup similar to the one recently made available at Conestoga’s on campus Tim Hortons. While it may not seem like a pressing matter for the college to focus on, it’s important for students and staff to be able to access the healthy alternative. People shouldn’t need to go to another option that isn’t as healthy simply because of an increased wait time.
The mobile pickup or a staff increase would improve people’s overall satisfaction with the restaurant and it would allow the workers to have less stress as the establishment would have new methods to handle the number of people coming to order. A solution could help students like Batista who are trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle while trying to keep up with the demands of their program.
“It gets frustrating to wait so long,” she said. “I try to eat healthy but when the healthy alternative takes nearly 30 to 40 minutes, I have to leave the line because it’s taking up so much of my time. I end up having to settle for pizza. All the waiting really puts strain on the amount of work I can do during breaks. It’d be great if they could improve it even if only slightly.”
In other news at the College Council meeting, members were told the college is trying to draw more individuals to the hospitality program. They hope to inform people about the variety of jobs available after graduation, and educate them that they can become more than just a barista.
The next College Council meeting will be held Nov. 20.