Meet the New Director of Dining Services
by: Julia Hills
Wagner Dining Hall is a hot-spot on campus for both students and faculty. When news spread of a new director of dining services, many were curious to learn if there would be changes in dining on campus. Mr. Shawn Clements recently stepped into the role of director.
As a new staff member on campus, Clements may not be a familiar name to students. He was hired last October. He comes from an extensive background in food service.
“Anywhere from fine dining to fast food. … One way or another it’s always been food,” Clements said.
Before coming to Pitt Greensburg, he worked as a kitchen manager at Chick-Fil-A, but found that the hours weren’t compatible with life at home. Wanting to prioritize his family, Clements made the decision to take a job here on campus.
“I was working a lot of hours. I’ve been engaged for about three years now, and I have some young step-kids at home. … I needed to be home a little bit more, and there are better hours, weekends off.” Clements said.
He had originally applied for a directors position, but was turned down. With recent staffing changes though, he was asked to step up. It was an opportunity for what he needed.
Clements has stated that his biggest hope for the next few semesters is to expand on the programs held in Chambers Hall. Most students are aware of big events such as Oktoberfest, the Thanksgiving Dinner, and the Soul Food Dinner, to name a few.
“I think we’re going to hold some more events,” Clements said. “Like during dinner time we’ll have some themed dinners.”
These small changes, as well as the re-opening of Grill Nation, are the first in his larger goals. Unfortunately, though, there have already been issues. With the pandemic still ongoing, he has noticed issues with both supply of ingredients and staffing. He mentioned that there are ongoing improvements, but it will be a process.
“We are having staffing issues right now. We’re slowly working with PeopleReady and Achieva. … It’s slow going, but we’ll get there.” Clements said., “I would love to see more students interact and be involved with the dining area.”
Students are encouraged and welcome to join staff if they are interested. Clements pointed out that there are flyers throughout the building with directions on how to apply.
Clements is very enthusiastic about his new position and the opportunities he has to improve the dining experience here on campus.
With time and care, there will be new and exciting food changes.
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