If you're up late studying this week and want that late-night dose of caffeine, you'll have to look somewhere other than Penn Dining Services.
The stores underneath 1920 Commons - which include Starbucks, Subway, Top That!, Jamba Juice and the C3 convenience store - have changed their operating hours. They now close at 9:30 p.m. every day, instead of midnight.
"Looking at the number of customers who came into this location during the late night hours, there just weren't enough customers to justify staying open," said Barbara Lea-Kruger, spokeswoman for Business Services.
"When you combine all the businesses in that location, on average there were only 16 to 18 customers between the hours of 9:30 p.m. and midnight, so Penn Dining felt its resources would be better utilized," she added.
But students are not pleased with this change in hours, especially as it limits a late-night need for coffee and a quick bite to eat.
Palak Patel, a College sophomore and transfer student, was not at Penn when the retailers were open until midnight, but "if they were open until then now, I'd probably stay there longer each night," she said.
Patel sees the area as a good study environment as well as a place to get a quick snack. "I usually just grab something to eat from C3 and stay here and study until closing time," she said.
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For students who have been at Penn longer and were used to the late-night hours, this change poses quite a problem.
"I think it's a pretty bad decision and will make a lot of students upset," said Wharton junior Chris Johnson, a regular patron of Starbucks and C3.
"It was an especially useful late-night place during midterms and final exam time when students wanted that quick fix of coffee or a snack," he added.
Johnson, a self-proclaimed "night owl", said he consistently made late-night trips to C3 or Starbucks and now that the entire area closes early, it's not a welcome change.
"Even if they had just left Starbucks open and closed the others, it'd be better than closing everything," he said.
The issue was also brought up in last week's meeting of the Undergraduate Assembly by vice chairman Jay Patel. Since then, it's been handed over to the UA's Housing and Dining Committee.
"We are very aware of the issue and it is chief among a long list of suggestions that we will be aggressively bringing to dining administrators," said committee member and College senior Bing Chen.
"Specifically, we hope to rectify the situation with two solutions: one - to simply increase dining hall hours, including retail, and two - to create late-night options," he said, citing dining hall hours as "a perennial student, school-wide concern."
Despite concerns, there are no plans to reinstate the late night hours at this time, said Lea-Kruger.Comments powered by Disqus
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