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New FGCU Dining Hall Offers Many Culinary Options


(Source: Alston, Kristen, New FGCU Dining Hall Offers Many Culinary Options,” Naples News, September 7, 2008)

Florida Gulf Coast University students on the go may have a hard time deciding what to eat at the new Fresh Food Company at South Village, or SoVi, the new five-story, 124,000-square-foot student housing building.

The meal options change from day to day at SoVi dining. Designated food areas range from the “Home Zone” area, typically offering familiar foods such as pork, chicken, burgers, and hearty sandwiches, to vegan cuisine in the “Vegan’s Home” section, where there are options such as grilled teriyaki tofu and vegan chili.

“It’s a great place,” says FGCU freshman Allen Cavender. “It’s nice that they make (the food) right there in front of you.”

SoVi dining is something advantageous for students because it’s the first dining hall on campus adjacent to student housing, making it a convenient way for students, with or without a meal plan, to eat a fresh meal.

Some other choices include the deli and freshly made pizza.

There’s also the standard fare of a salad bar at the “produce” section, as well as a soup dispenser and a dessert table offering cookies, muffins, and other sweets.

To drink, students can help themselves to an array of fountain beverages, and assorted teas, juices, or milk. For students’ added convenience, a menu of the breakfast, lunch and dinner items offered at SoVi dining are online every week.

Other dining options available include a sandwich-making station with several varieties of loaves of bread, a station with several kinds of cereal and a favorite among SoVi dining’s many cafeteria-goers — a soft-serve ice cream machine.

For freshman Brian Blomburg, this is a chance to use his dining options creatively.

“I make ice cream sandwiches,” he says, pouring soft serve onto a cookie from the dessert table, which he tops with another cookie. “It’s all about having options.”

SoVi Dining offers a wide selection of meals, serving breakfast and lunch from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., and dinner from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. And, unlike The Perch at the Student Union, SoVi Dining remains open on the weekends. Entrance to the dining hall is as simple as paying $5.75 for breakfast or lunch and $7.95 for dinner, or for those with meal plans, a simple swipe of a student I.D. Once inside, students are welcomed to an all-you-can-eat fare of fresh dining.

With all of its ease, convenience, and options, it’s easy to see why students are lining up at SoVi Dining. It offers options that students haven’t seen at FGCU before, and it’s a fine indication of the promising direction in which the University is headed.

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