UNK gets new food service provider

A new food service provider starts at UNK Tuesday.

KEARNEY, Neb. (KSNB) - A new food service provider will start Tuesday at the University of Nebraska at Kearney, but students won't see much of a change.

Sodexo signed a five year contract with the university, worth $24 million.

Services will remain the same for students. Meal plans and "dining dollars" will still be available for them to use.

"From the student perspective, it'll be seamless," said Jon Watts, the vice chancellor of business and finance at UNK. "I think they'll see the same faces, and we're excited about that. There's about 140 full and part-time employees that support this account. So it's a tremendous part of our community. We're thrilled to have them here."

Chartwells was the former food service provider at UNK. They worked with the university for 20 years, but left for financial reasons.

Sodexo kept all of Chartwell's existing employees. Starbucks, Chick-fil-A and Subway will remain in the food court. It's possible there could be some new additions in the future.

"I think with every partnership comes some new energy, and a new set of eyes. We're thrilled to work with them as partners over these next few months, and really wait until students come back to talk to them about what they want to see in their dining, but we're excited about the fall," Watts said.

The university will inform students of their meal plan options closer to the fall semester.

UNK's food court is closed for most of the summer, but Starbucks will open for student enrollment events.