Dining During COVID

 

COVID-19 has dramatically changed the way in which each of us go about our daily lives. Since the onset of the pandemic, Dining Services has worked closely with all areas of the college, the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH), and our food safety consultant to implement changes that will minimize the spread of COVID-19. Our first and most important objective is your safety and the safety of our staff. 

While we are confident that the safety-driven modifications we have made with the assistance of the RIDOH will serve to minimize the spread of COVID-19, we also need your help. We ask you to help by following all safety protocols including but not limited to wearing your mask, maintaining distancing, and frequently washing your hands. We also ask that you do not enter dining facilities if you have any symptoms associated with COVID-19. The Dining Staff pledges to do the same. We ask for your cooperation and understanding with the modifications that have been implemented for your safety.

Dining Services has compiled the following list of questions and answers that we hope you find helpful.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. Food services is available for Residents, Commuters, Faculty, and Staff at Donovan Dining Center and thru vending machines across our campus. There are changes to how you access foodservice, how we deliver our services, and the types of food and beverages we may offer, to maximize the safety of our guests and staff.

Safely-distanced seating is available in DDC and outdoors on the DDC Patio. Our ability to offer seating is subject to continued approval from the RIDOH and RIC.  Continuous Guest cooperation and compliance with the safety protocols will be needed by everyone, in order for us to continue to offering seating. We thank you in advance!

Our dining areas have been redesigned to safely support social distancing. This has significantly reduced our capacity and resulted in a limited number of single seats, tables for two, and tables of four.

  • All Guests are reminded that masks are mandatory in DDC, per the RI Department of Health, unless a Guest is eating or drinking.
  • We have set up a sanitation and recycling area in the DDC seating area. Guests are encouraged to use the portable hand washing station, hand sanitizer, and may assist in cleaning/sanitizing their tables if they feel more comfortable doing so. Dining Services will also be cleaning & sanitizing the dining room.
  • For safe distancing tables cannot be joined and chairs cannot be added.
  • All Non Residents who will be using available seating are required to provide their contact information at the cashier station.

We will continue to encourage guests to take their meals to go whenever possible, to assist with social distancing efforts.

Yes. Residents will be allowed to use up to three meals during any single meal period, provided that they have a sufficient number of meals remaining for the week, in the meal plan they have chosen. Residents may also use their available FLEX Points at any time.

While COVID-19 has resulted in significantly fewer people on campus on most days, DDC will continue to operate Monday-Friday from 7:00am-6:00pm.

We have tried to be as transparent as possible by sharing the changes to date. We will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and should we need to, will make the additional changes for your safety and well-being.

Yes. Masks must be worn at all times while in dining facilities. This includes, but is not limited to, access ways, service areas, and seating areas both indoors and outdoors. Face coverings may only be removed when guests are actually eating and drinking in dining rooms or outdoor seating areas.

Face coverings shall not be required for residents whose health would be damaged or who are developmentally unable to comply. These students are required to submit a request with supporting medical documentation to the Reasonable Housing Accommodations Committee through the Disability Services Center utilizing the form on their website.

Yes. Guests are required to follow social distancing practices while in dining facilities. These practices include using designated entrances, following “one way directional flow”, and pausing at designated distancing markings when needed. We will have Attendants available to coordinate and monitor the number of guests entering and in the service area at any given time and when exiting, Guests will be required to use a designated exit door.

No. Anyone who has any of the following symptoms cough, fever, shortness of breath, shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain, runny nose, stuffy nose, sore throat, headache, nausea or vomiting, fatigue, diarrhea, or recent loss of taste or smell, should not enter dining facilities.

Residents who experience such symptoms MUST contact Health Services for guidance.

Residents who are required to isolate or quarantine may use the Anchor Dining App (GET) to preorder from a variety of food, beverage, and snack items.

For the safety of our guests, individuals who are required to quarantine or self-isolate, cannot enter dining facilities.

The honest answer is that we simply do not know. We hope that the scientific and medical efforts underway will begin to reduce the impact of COVID-19. Until this happens, we will remain committed to providing you with the best possible food service experience in the safest way possible.

Dining Services has worked closely with all areas of the College, the RIDOH, and our food safety consultant to minimize and prevent the transmission of COVID-19, so that we may maximize your safety and that of our staff.

We have developed a comprehensive operational plan which has been thoroughly reviewed and approved for use by the RIDOH. This plan incorporates the best practices and recommendations by the CDC, RIDOH, and our food safety consultant. Dining staff have received additional training to execute this plan and will follow strict health safety protocols throughout this pandemic. We have also prepared response plans in the event that current conditions change.

Our dining facilities undergo an extensive cleaning and sanitation process, and our housekeeping focus has been increased to maintain a high level of cleanliness as well as to focus on frequently touched areas. 

We have installed additional sneeze guards, plexi-glass shields, and equipment that promotes touchless access. Two self-contained portable handwashing units and hand sanitation stations have been strategically placed in our facilities for use by our Guests. Additional equipment to minimize/prevent the transmission of COVID-19 has also been acquired.

Yes. We have had to make some adjustments to support social distancing requirements. These adjustments primarily involve self-service areas and customized menu items. Every attempt has been made to provide alternatives for impacted items and areas.

For example, self-serve salad bars and soup stations are prohibited by the RIDOH. We will be preparing a variety of freshly made salads throughout the day and our soups will be served.

We have streamlined our menu offerings on the Deli Bar and Grill Line to reduce the impact of customized items. Customized omelets and customized quesadillas have been replaced with omelets and quesadillas of the day. Our self-serve salad bar and soup station is available but are server-provided.

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College Dining Services

We provide residential and retail food services, catering, vending, and meeting space.