By Travis Morgan
Students at Utah Valley State College need not dread cafeteria food any longer. The college opened a food court in its Sorenson Student Center Monday, Oct. 22, to better serve UVSC”s 23,000 students.
Franchises like Chick-fil-A, Hogi Yogi and Stone Willy”s Pizza now accompany cafeteria staples of burgers and Mexican cuisine.
“I just like the variety,” said student Susie Doman.
Part of a renovation project to expand the student center and new food court resembles a scaled-down Wilkinson center, said Derek Hall, director of UVSC college relations.
“It”s the same general concept, on a smaller scale,” he said.
When the center is completed, it will include a new convenience store, a ballroom large enough to accommodate 1,000 people, a game center and an ice cream parlor, according to a UVSC press release.
Initial reactions from students have been positive.
“I love La Esquina (Mexican restaurant) so much, I could devour 15 burritos in one sitting,” said UVSC dance major Camille Davis.
The first day of operation tried the patience of some students, though.
“We had to wait for 15 minutes to buy pizza at Stone Willy”s,” student Audra Frehner said.
Increasing student enrollment at UVSC has necessitated the center expansion, Hall said.
The number of students attending UVSC rose nearly eight percent this fall, setting an enrollment record at the school, according to a press release.
“The more surprising number this fall is the nearly unprecedented jump in full-time students, a likely a reflection of the increased demand for our four-year programs,” said UVSC President Kerry D. Romesburg in a press release.
The state college now offers 25 bachelor degree programs, Hall said.
State estimates show that UVSC will grow to 43,000 students by 2020 and become the largest institution in Utah, Hall said.