With fewer than five months until opening day, dining services is beginning to hire the student staff for Turner Place.
The hiring pool opened on Monday, April 2 for students interested in working at Virginia Tech’s newest dining facility.
“We are looking to begin hiring all of the student positions, so anything from front line servers to cashiers to kitchen help staff,” said Andrew Watling, a project coordinator for dining services.
Between 250 and 300 students will be hired for positions at Turner Place.
John Barrett, the assistant manager for Turner Place, said student employees at the other dining halls are being given the opportunity to transfer to Turner Place. Staff at Shultz, which will be closing at the end of the semester, will also be transferred to other dining halls.
“The main focus right now is getting experienced help in so, we won’t start out with a whole new staff at Turner Place,” Barrett said.
The dining hall, which will include Qdoba Mexican Grill, Bruegger’s Bagels and Jamba Juice, among Tech’s own creations, will be located on the academic side of campus.
“We’re going to hire students there just like we do anywhere else on campus,” Watling said. “The only difference is that we have to hire so many at one time.”
Dining services offer a unique job experience for students and Turner Place will be no different.
“We don’t have a Bruegger’s, so bagel making is new; we don’t have a Qdoba or a Jamba Juice,” Barrett said. “I don’t know many students who know how to make crepes or gelato so that’s going to be something new as well.”
Students who want to be a teppanyaki chef, however, are out of luck.
Mark Moritz, executive chef for Turner Place, said those positions will likely be filled by a salaried position, someone who is able to give more time to the job than the typical two or three hour student
“One of the things that we have to look at is recruitment from the outside,” Moritz said. “We have to try our best to recruit people from outside the area that want to move here. Recruitment is going to be a hot topic in the coming weeks.”
Not only will the experiences be new to servers but also diners; the Qdoba will be the only university franchised Qdoba in the nation, and the Jamba Juice will be the first one in the state of Virginia.
For the chain restaurants, key staff will be sent to training facilities. There will also be certified trainers for the first couple of weeks to ensure that staff is following the proper corporate procedure.
Despite the heightened interest in the new dining hall around campus, Barrett said being understaffed at Turner Place is something they have to consider. To lessen the chances of that happening, current student employees at all of the dining halls are being
given the option to transfer to Turner Place.
Working in a dining hall also gives students an opportunity to branch out from their field of study.
“Are we looking for people who went to culinary school? No,” Moritz said. “A lot of times people that have very little skill, just a desire, are better suited for what we are looking for than people that have all these skills that are bad
Barrett hopes to hire some students at orientation, but he realizes it isn’t
always a sure bet come move-in day. There
will also be a job fair April 25 and 26 at D2 for students who are interested in working at Turner Place.
There is still a lot to be done behind the scenes before students arrive — tweaking recipes, picking uniform colors and making sure there are enough pots and pans
for the nine different
Turner Place is on track to open for students on August 27, the first day of classes for the fall semester.