by Akilah Nyerere
In the past, University of La Verne’s clubs and organizations have been able to put together programs outside and feed the people that participate with food catered by Davenport.
Recently, however, it has become more difficult for clubs and organizations to be approved to hold outdoor lunches. The main reason that approval for outdoor lunches has become more difficult is because of the new criteria for outdoor lunches being established by the new senior food services director Keith Friend and his staff.
In the past, when clubs and organizations wanted to hold lunch outside, Davenport would not only prepare the food, but they would also manage the budget. Now, the group must budget for the number of people they are expecting, which would have to include the entire ULV community.
Although Friend has expressed that he is willing to hold lunches outside of Davenport, his main concern is the regular students that rely on Davenport’s services on a daily basis.
“I’m not going to affect my regular guests and subject them to less service and less quality because a group wants to go outside,” said Friend.
The Associated Student Federation (ASF) Forum is one group that has been having difficulty getting outdoor lunch programs approved. For example, the ASF sponsored version of Singled Out, which was a part of this year’s Homecoming week-long calendar of events, was denied Davenport’s services. ASF President Mario Guerrero said that because Davenport did not contribute, participation in the event was low. However, Guerrero understands Friend’s decision to determine which clubs and organizations get to hold outdoor lunches. “When he moves food outside,” said Guerrero, “students get less of a variety.”
“I’m not going to do a sub-standard job,” said Friend. “It’s got to be at least what I do in Davenport every day.”
There are several factors that Friend said he considers in determining which programs Davenport will cater outdoors. Friend believes that all outside lunches should be open to all students, faculty and staff. “We will do literally anything in dining to make sure we’re a part of the campus community,” said Friend.
He also feels that the students that regularly rely on Davenport for meals are not inconvenienced. “It is not an option to put out my regular guests.”
Friend is more than willing to hold lunches outside if the organization or club that is sponsoring the event is prepared to pay for the expense. As an alternative to taking the food outside, Friend suggests that clubs and organizations hold more events inside Davenport.