California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

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Pioneer Dining Hours Close Early

Why It isn’t simple to Extend Dining Hours?
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Captured image displaying theinside of the CSUEB dining commons

Students at California State University, East Bay, appreciate having dining options available to them. This is especially beneficial for students residing on campus throughout the week, given the distance from their homes.

Every student living in the dorms is required to purchase a meal plan. While having a meal plan is advantageous, some may view it as a waste, particularly when they cannot use their swipes due to the early closure of the Pioneer Kitchen at Dining Commons.

The Pioneer Kitchen at the Dining Commons currently serves dinner between 5 pm and 7:30 pm. However, certain students may have classes during these hours, and most of them do not finish their late classes until 8:30 PM at the earliest or 9:30 PM at the latest. Regrettably, the dining hall closes well before these times, making it impossible for these students to have dinner there.

Before the COVID-19 shutdown of the campus in 2020, the kitchen had later hours. Despite the campus being fully operational for the past couple of years, it appears that while other California State University campuses and campuses in the Bay Area offer later dining hours, the Dining Hours at CSUEB were scaled back.

During a town hall meeting on November 15th, 2023, where students had the opportunity to ask questions to Pioneer Dining staff, the main topic was the possibility of extending the hours at the Pioneer Kitchen.

One student voiced his concern about not being able to have dinner at the Dining Commons, or D.C. as they call it, on some nights due to late practices. He said, “Sometimes I have practice from 8 or 9 pm, and when I have practice from 4 pm to 8 pm, how am I supposed to eat dinner?”

Another student during the town hall meeting explained that “there were different areas that enjoyed hours a little past 7:30 like 10 to 10:30’

“That is something we can look into and explore. Said Abraham Ibarra, the executive chef for PIioneer 

However, extending the dining hours is not as easy as a snap of a finger. Several logistical considerations come into play when it comes to adjusting the dining hall hours.

“You have to consider that there’s labor involved right? We don’t want to make too much food where there is waste. We also use the university resources, like energy, and water, so we have to consider all those things” Ibarra added. 

If they were to extend the hours it may not be as fast as the Spring semester of 2024 because of the employee turnover, “We have a lot of student employees that shift Fall semester to Spring semester, we lose a lot” said Marc Sterling Resident District Manager. “We’re kind of unsure about labor, who it’s going to look like for the Spring semester so I can’t commit to late-night hours”. Sterling added. 

Despite the logistical concerns surrounding the late-night hours of the dining hall at CSUEB, the dining staff is still considering the possibility of reverting to later hours in the future.

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