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Food options not the same for evening students

Students who are enrolled in evening classes mostly rely on meals packed from home or items from vending machines.

“I don’t normally eat on campus,” said Cici Liu, abusiness administration student. “It’s hard to find a hot, fresh meal [in the evening].”

A few times a week Liu’s classes start at around 5 p.m. and end at 10 p.m. She has time to grab a bite before class but ends up choosing to ignore her hunger or settle for less appealing options.

Most Food Services outlets close at 7:30 p.m. on weekdays. The Portable Feast, which closes at 8:30 p.m. and 35th Street Market Café located in residence closes at 11 p.m.

The café has changed its hours from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekends.

“I bring my food when I can,” said Ammar Suleman, an informative technology student. “I’d rather eat here but It doesn’t make sense when I’m going back to back between building B and T.”

Suleman doesn’t have enough time to walk to residence for the 35th Street Market. And by the time he leaves the T building, Bits & Bytes is closed.

“The vending machines are reliable enough,” Suleman said. “If I need something to pick myself up I usually go for a candy bar or chocolate milk.”

An on-campus 24-hour restaurant could likely solve the issues these students face. But, Food Services has its reasons not to implement it.

“There just isn’t enough traction to keep a business running [by the end of the day],” said Andre Villeneuve, senior operations manager of Food Services.

Students staying late still have options off-campus. Restaurants in the vicinity include Popeyes which closes at 10:30 p.m., and open 24 hours is a Tim Hortons and Kettleman’s Bagels.

With the college slowly transitioning towards a three-semester system, this could mean an influx of students and more spread out timetables, with possibly a prominent student base for evening hours.

“We’ll have to see if we get more business at our outlets,” Villeneuve said.

Food Services outlets include The Portable Feast, Tim Hortons, Bits & Bytes, Marketplace Food Court, Booster Juice, 35th Street Café, and The Fix Eatery.

“B building is one of the more centralized locations where Portable Feast is,” Villeneuve said. “It creates for an efficient location that students from anywhere on campus can grab and go.”

Food Services tries to bring nourishing meals for students on campus. It is currently not feasible from a business standpoint to hold for 24 hours of operation.

“We’re able to understand our areas,” Villeneuve said.

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