The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Dining hall overflows due to reservation conflict

Administration resolves issue after student pushback
Photo by Patrick Hansell for The Lafayette
The administration will assess space availability in dining halls in the coming weeks.

The college’s dining services again faced controversy after a substantial portion of Marquis Dining Hall was twice closed off during Sunday dinner hours to accommodate the football team. After receiving student complaints, Parkhurst Dining announced on Monday that the football team’s recurring reservation would be moved to another space.

On Sunday, conditions in Marquis were so cramped that some students allegedly left the dining hall upon witnessing the lack of space – the college’s other dining hall, Upper Farinon, is closed on Sundays. 

Some students chose to eat their meals on the floor.

“My friends came up to me and told me there was nowhere to sit and we have to sit on the floor,” Gareth Schuster ’27, one of the students who opted to dine on the floor, said. “So we went close to the far end of the room where the football players were … and we sat down against the divider.”

Hayley Katz ’25, who requires the use of crutches, was also in Marquis on Sunday evening and was similarly frustrated.

“I don’t personally understand it,” Katz said. “I don’t get … why an entire team should have a quarter of a dining hall when there’s a lot of other students there.” 

“Every time I would try to get a table, I’d just be too slow,” Katz said. “It got to a point where my friend had to get a plate of food for both of us.”

The football team’s reservation of the space, officially called the Fleck Room, is due to an initiative known as the “training table.” The initiative provides key nutrients to players who need to stay in shape for the season. The Fleck Room’s reservation and the food served to the players were paid for by a benefactor of the college. 

“Because student-athletes typically have specific dietary requirements related to the extensive demands of training and competition placed on their bodies, training tables are standard across Division I programs,” Nicole Eramo, college president Nicole Hurd’s chief of staff, wrote in an email. 

Following backlash from students, the college announced on Monday that the Fleck Room will be open to all students on Sundays, allowing for “greater seating options.”

All training table experiences will transition to the Clay Ketcham Room, also located in Marquis Hall.

“Dining staff will monitor usage numbers in the dining halls over the weekend, and assess whether or not opening further spaces may be necessary,” Eramo wrote.

The football team was not involved in any of the decisions made in reserving a room for the training table. No members of the football team could be reached for comment. 

Madeline Marriott ’24 and Trebor Maitin ’24 contributed reporting.

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About the Contributors
Andreas Pelekis
Andreas Pelekis, Assistant News Editor
Tennis addict.
Patrick Hansell
Patrick Hansell, Staff Photographer

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