Fall 2021 Service Expectations—August 16, 2021

We are entering a busy fall semester, working our way back into something close to normal operations. As we do that, we are managing the largest enrollment in the College’s history and impacted by the well-publicized labor and supply shortages across Maine and the country.

As a result, we will need to make adjustments to the services we offer, as outlined below.

DINING SERVICES

Dining services will need to be focused on supporting student meal plans and major campus events. To further complicate matters, food distributors in the region have been hit particularly hard by staffing shortages, causing delayed deliveries and order fill-rates that are trending between 70 to 80 percent. We do not expect this situation to improve when we open this fall. To help alleviate the pressure on dining, the following changes will apply for the fall.

  • Catering will be limited to the following official College events for the semester:
    • Events posted to the Bowdoin Academic Calendar
    • Endowed professorship dinners
    • Faculty meetings in Daggett Lounge
    • Fifty Years of Women at Bowdoin celebrations
    • Faculty Seminar Series
    • Alumni relations programs
    • Symposia
There will be no catered services available for department meetings, committee meetings, social gatherings, student group meetings, faculty workshops, professional development trainings, department retreats, varsity sport team meetings, etc. With a twenty-four-hour advance order, a “Box of Joe” (serves eight) can be picked up at the Smith Union Café.
Currently, interdepartmental budget amounts for catering are set at $0 for all departments. Notwithstanding the above restrictions on catering, we are also considering the impact of through-the-line charges when restrictions are lifted, and will revisit these amounts as plans for the academic year progress. If departments purchase food and beverages from outside vendors, these purchases are expected to be managed within existing core operating budgets.
  • From August 29 to September 12, lunch and dinner at Moulton and Thorne dining halls will be open to students only. The private dining rooms will also be unavailable during these meals. This will allow us to assess wait times, seating availability, and the impact of a new express dinner service line in Smith Union. Faculty and staff are welcome to go through the line for breakfast. At the end of this restricted period, we will revisit opening these dining facilities for faculty and staff.
  • Jack Magee’s Grill will be exclusively serving “Fast Track” lunch and dinner for students and will be closed to faculty and staff for lunch and dinner. Vaccinated faculty and staff may use the seating in the pub area to eat their carry-in lunch. This restriction will be revisited periodically during the semester.

COPY CENTER

At the beginning of the semester, expect a two-to-three day turnaround time for most jobs. More time may be required for large requests and bound booklets. Submit jobs early to ensure they can be completed on time.

EVENT PRODUCTION SUPPORT

Event Production Services (EPS), formerly AV Services, will prioritize supporting the audio, video, and production needs for College events and meetings. During the fall semester, as EPS trains a new cohort of student technicians, the following service changes will apply:

  • Staff will not remain on site at most events once setup has concluded. Staff will have conversations with event hosts in advance of the setup to address the needs of the event and will only remain at an event that requires active support (e.g., a public presentation in Kresge Auditorium).
  • Staff will focus on supporting events that occur on weekdays and between 8:30 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. Weekend event support will initially be limited to major College events.
  • For events with extensive production requests, staff will work with event hosts to schedule the event in a venue that has the existing equipment to support the requests.
  • Staff will recommend that meetings either take place in person or using Zoom/Teams, but will have limited capacity to support hybrid events.

FLEET SERVICES

To create more convenient parking for faculty and staff, fleet vehicles have been relocated from behind Rhodes Hall to the Stowe Inn parking lot at 63 Federal Street. Please plan accordingly for the extra time required to pick up and return a vehicle. The first three rows closest to Federal Street are now striped in yellow and marked “Fleet Vehicle.” The slots are not designated for any specific vehicle number, as was past practice, so returned vehicles can be parked in any one of the designated spaces.

HOUSEKEEPING

There continues to be no evidence to date of surface transmission of COVID-19. Therefore, housekeeping services will devote much less time and effort this semester to wiping down high-touch surfaces across campus. The cleaning regimen for the semester is outlined below:

  • Offices:
    • Trash and recycling will be removed Tuesdays and Thursdays. (All food waste and containers must be placed in hallway, kitchen, or centrally-located trash bins, not in office trash.)
    • Vacuum and dusting will take place on Mondays or Wednesdays
    • If office occupants would prefer that housekeeping not enter individual offices, they should put a sign on their door saying, “No housekeeping services required.” 
  • Restrooms:
    • Cleaned, restocked, and trash removed daily
  • Classrooms/Labs:
    • Trash removed daily
    • Floors mopped and/or vacuumed Monday, Wednesday, and Friday
  • Hallways and stairwells:
    • High traffic areas will be vacuumed or swept daily. All others, once a week.
    • Floors washed once or twice a week depending on traffic volume
  • Showers:
    • High-touch surfaces disinfected daily
    • Swept daily
    • Cleaned once a week
  • Laundry rooms:
    • Cleaned and trash removed daily

MAIL CENTER

Keep in mind that external carriers cannot deliver around campus right now, so we are receiving many more packages than we normally do. It would be helpful if departments could arrange to pick up their deliveries right away. We have had many packages sit for weeks and do not have the extra space.

SETUPS AND MOVES

  • All move and event requests must be submitted at least two weeks in advance.
  • Move requests will take two to four weeks on average to complete. Larger projects will require more lead time.
  • Try to limit event bookings. If there are back-to-back events in the same space, please try to use the same setup, if possible.
  • Adjustments to event setups may not be made at the last minute.

STOCKROOM

As all campus buildings remain locked, all WB Mason orders will continue to be routed through the stockroom, which may cause delays.

While the current circumstances in Maine and in many other places around the country prevent us from offering the same level of service we are accustomed to at Bowdoin, we are hopeful that these restrictions can be lifted as time goes by. In the meantime, thank you for your understanding and cooperation.