Chartwells recently conducted a partner survey and found that nearly half (49%) of higher education dining leaders believe catering demand will return to pre-COVID levels by next fall, if not sooner. As part of its commitment to providing innovative and safe dining solutions, Chartwells revamped its proprietary catering program, Carved and Crafted, to provide new contact-free options shortly after U.S. campuses began sending students home. Chartwells’ catering menus now feature individually packaged meals, including vegetarian and vegan options, and leverages mobile and online ordering for contactless pick-ups and drop-offs.
“We knew our popular traditional catering program wasn’t realistic during the pandemic, so we quickly overhauled our program, reinvented the way we serve and made it as safe and accessible as possible,” said Lisa McEuen, CEO of Chartwells Higher Education. “Our teams are incredibly talented, dedicated and nimble, and quickly pivoted to roll out a contactless catering experience that could still capture memorable moments in a matter of weeks.”
The new program has already been successful in different catering environments across the country, including:
- The 2020 Vice Presidential Debate at the University of Utah: The Chartwells team worked tirelessly over nine days to safely distribute over 6,000 gala boxes to debate commissioners, state and national media outlets, local law enforcement and many others on campus for the debate.
- Wedding Banquet at Wichita State: At a premiere local art gallery, Chartwells served an elegant weekend wedding reception that balanced beauty, taste and safety.
- Hand-Crafted Charcuterie Boxes at The University of Central Oklahoma: Students on campus received beautiful charcuterie boxes featuring fruits, meats, cheeses and desserts, all individually handmade by the Chartwells catering team.
“When people think of college food, they often don’t realize the variety, flavors, and on-trend meals we offer, especially when it comes to catering,” said Shannon Mohyuddin, Director of Catering at the University of Utah. “At the 2020 Vice Presidential debate, we offered contactless catering without sacrificing service or customization. We catered vegan and vegetarian friendly, deconstructed gourmet sandwiches and street tacos with make-your-own hot and cold components. It’s great to serve these delicious flavors and fresh ingredients while offering an extra level of comfort and satisfaction through contactless options.”