Students may have heard about The SHOP, which provides free food and resources for students. However, going to The SHOP can be difficult at times with hours of operation being limited to Mondays 3 to 6 p.m., Tuesdays 9 a.m. to noon and Fridays noon to 3 p.m.
Plus, with class schedules, it can be hard to find time to walk over to the Rowan Boulevard Apartments where The SHOP is located.
301 High Street, the Ric Edelman College of Communication & Creative Arts building, doesn’t have any vending machines, and the lines at the Barnes and Noble Starbucks tend to be long, which makes the search for a quick snack between classes even tougher.
Since last year, The SHOP launched a pilot program called The SHOP on the Go, in which satellite SHOPs provide food in different academic buildings. As of now, The SHOP on the Go is located in the engineering building in room 317 and the Tutoring Center, located in Savitz Hall room 343.
Both serve different purposes. At the engineering building, they are focused on providing meals, whereas the Tutoring Center provides snacks on the go.
“Things like cup of noodles, peanut butter and jellies, soups, Chef Boyardee-type things,” said Andrew Perrone, assistant director of volunteerism, in reference to items stocked at the engineering building.
“But we’re not really sending over to them cans of green beans because I haven’t met a student yet whose thinking like, ‘What do I want for lunch? I’ll just eat a whole can of green beans,’” Perrone said.
Perrone has already reached out to other locations on campus who may be interested in having The SHOP on the Go. The College of Humanities & Social Sciences is interested in providing meals like the engineering building does, while the Advising Center is interested in providing snacks like the Tutoring Center.
In the beginning, there were small problems at the engineering building, such as making sure there was a can opener and providing bowls and spoons for meals. While the engineering building has a kitchen area with a microwave, they are looking to add refrigerating space.
“There’s a lot of research that shows that fueling up while you’re doing your academic work is actually really beneficial, and it’s really great for the mind,” said Jaclyn Dankel, program assistant of tutoring services.
Right now, snacks are in abundance at the Tutoring Center. They even have vegan snacks, although they are not always available because the snacks they receive are random.
“We actually go through snacks rapidly during midterms and finals, and if we don’t have them, the students look for them,” said Laura Repsher, assistant director of tutoring services.
Outside the main campus, Perrone hopes to open up a SHOP at the Camden campus, and he recently submitted a grant proposal to the state to get funds. The space they are looking at is an old bank that was renovated.
There is also a program called Fresh for All. Every Friday from 10 to 11 a.m., there is free produce at the parking lot by the football stadium on the corner where parking lot C and D meet. If students aren’t able to make it that morning, they can register with The SHOP and volunteers will make a basket for pick-up at The SHOP’s location in the Rowan Boulevard Apartments, which can be picked up before 3 p.m.
“Students have come to know that we provide snacks, so it’s something to look forward to. When you get out of bed in the morning, if you forget to eat, or you don’t have time to eat lunch, we’re going to take care of you and we’re going to help you get something to eat while you’re on the run,” said Repsher.
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