From Illinois Business Journal news services
BELLEVILLE — Students arriving on the Lindenwood Belleville campus in the fall will have a dramatically new dining experience at Matt’s Café, the campus’ dining facility.
Lindenwood’s board of directors has approved a partnership with Pedestal Foods to overhaul the dining experience at both the St. Charles and Belleville campuses. The Belleville plan will cost nearly $500,000 and includes the expansion of Matt’s Café, which will nearly triple in size, and the creation of an outdoor dining area connected to the campus’ sunken garden. A “generous” donation from the Fred J. Kern family is helping make this expansion possible, the university said.
“Our partnership with Pedestal Foods is all about the students,” said Lindenwood University System President Michael D. Shonrock, Ph.D. “We asked the students specifically what they wanted, and we’re delivering an experience that will be ‘like no other.’”
Belleville campus President Brett Barger, Ed.D., said students will see another big change this fall with declining balance and block meal plan options for resident students and commuters, offering much greater flexibility and extended hours of operation.
“The Lindenwood University Belleville campus continues to be a dynamic high growth environment,” said Barger. “An expanded Matt’s Café will offer students the opportunity to enjoy a wide variety of food and beverage options and build on the excitement at this campus.”
Barger said he was extremely grateful to the Kern family not only for the donation, but for the foundational gift that supported the creation of Matt’s Café in 2009.
When completed, Matt’s Café will be approximately 3,200 square feet. Construction begins May 1 and will be completed around Aug. 1, in time for Pedestal Foods to begin operations.
“We are pleased to partner with the Lindenwood University team responding to students’ preferences and creating custom solutions that make food service part of the overall vision for the campus culture,” said Jennifer Dodd, chief operating officer for Pedestal Foods. “We’ll be designing new and adventurous dining experiences and adding communal gathering points for students to relax, study, and socialize, as well.”
Pedestal Foods is an on-site dining services company serving K-12, college and seniors.
Lindenwood University, founded in 1827, is an independent liberal arts university offering more than 200 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in diverse areas of study and traditional and accelerated formats, including online. Lindenwood operates residential campuses in St. Charles, Mo., and Belleville, as well as numerous regional centers and extension sites throughout Missouri.