March 29, 2021
To: College Students
From: Michele Rasmussen, Dean of Students in the University, and Richard Mason, Assistant Vice President for Campus Life and Associate Dean of the College
Subject: Campus dining vendor selection
Date: March 26, 2021
We are pleased to announce that Chartwells Higher Education has been selected as the new food service provider for the residential dining commons, academic cafés, and retail markets, effective July 1, 2021. Chartwells will replace Bon Appétit Management Company, which has served as the campus food service provider for the past five years.
Chartwells was selected after a months-long process to identify a vendor that would fulfill UChicago Dining’s mission to build community through food and procure and serve the best food while supporting the surrounding neighborhoods and the city of Chicago.
Throughout the selection process, Chartwells demonstrated its commitment to creating customized menus using local ingredients, authentic flavors, and fresh produce. Chartwells has pledged to partner with UChicago Local and the Office of Business Diversity to procure fresh foods that are produced sustainably, with 30 to 40 percent of ingredients purchased from minority- and women-owned businesses and enterprises in our surrounding neighborhoods.
A 10-member selection committee, UChicago Dining and Campus and Student Life staff members, students from the Campus Dining Advisory Board, and campus partners assisted with the selection process. The Office of the President, Office of the Provost, and academic divisions and departments also provided guidance. The selection process included vendor site tours, reference checks, interviews with vendors and chef candidates, and advisement from a professional food service consultant company.
Plans are in place for a smooth transition to Chartwells on July 1. We do not anticipate any layoffs as a result of the new contract; all staff will be invited to meet with Chartwells to discuss their desire to remain in their positions. Chartwells will present employment offers at the current pay rates.