Loyola considers new dining provider

Kloe Witt, Breaking News Editor

Loyola University is undergoing a process to potentially replace its current dining provider — Sodexo.

The process is called a request for proposal, which means the university is inviting a number of companies to submit formal bids to win the contract to operate the dining facilities on campus for the next few years.

This comes as Sodexo employees in Loyno Dining have been dealing with the ongoing unionization process, which they hope will result in higher wages and better labor practices.

In October of 2022, students at Loyola began supporting Sodexo employees in their attempt to unionize.

Workers said they are underpaid, overworked, and underappreciated.

During the summer, Sodexo employees don’t receive health benefits, causing many to go months without health insurance.

Sodexo employees just received a 3% raise, one of the few perks the employees have received in the past several years.

In 2021, after layoffs from the pandemic, Loyola’s dining services struggled to find enough staff to cover the full capacity of the campus. This left student employees saying they were overwhelmed and overworked. This same issue led to longer wait times and fewer food stations in the Orleans Room, the campus dining hall affecting students.

Students have also expressed frustration with the food provider selection. They have reported on the lack of dietary options, specifically affecting vegan and vegetarian diets. Students claimed that even though there are options in the Orleans Room, it is limited, and they have to eat the same thing for days on end.

Loyola Vice President of Marketing and Communications Rachel Hoormann said Loyola could not comment on the RFP process at this time.