Porter Consulting Foodservice Planning & Design

Lynn University

In Spring 2013, Lynn University hired Porter Khouw Consulting to create a campus-wide dining services master plan which was then used to rebid the University’s foodservice and vending programs.

Lynn University is a small liberal arts college based in Boca Raton, Florida. It has 850 residential students and 900 commuter students. The campus community is very diverse with students from across the United States and from 86 different countries. Lynn’s campus landscape has changed dramatically over the last few years with the addition of new campus buildings. The University also plans to add more residence halls in the near future as well as expand its student union.

The University had retained the same foodservice operator for years and customer satisfaction with the dining program was waning. In addition, some of the dining facilities were outdated and the campus meal plan structure was cumbersome and not customer friendly.

To kick off the project, the PKC team spent five days on campus touring all of the facilities, conducting focus groups and personal interviews and assessing the immediate dining options off campus. We conducted meetings with residential and commuter students, faculty and staff as well as administrators from all areas of campus life that intersect with dining including admissions, alumni relations, student life, housing, residence life, athletics, conferences and more. We also interviewed the president of the College and his administrative team to learn more about the LU’s goals and how the campus landscape may change over the next five to 10 years. Using all of the information gathered, PKC created a web-based survey which was distributed campus wide and received more than 1,000 responses.

Combining the qualitative and quantitative market research with our national experience, PKC developed the optimum dining program for Lynn University. Our recommendations included a new vision for the residential dining venue including specific recommendations for renovations to make the venue a true gathering space with student-friendly food and amenities, flexible and customer-friendly meal plans that will allow students to use their meal plan money when and where they want (including in vending machines), extended hours of operation in all of the campus dining venues, a new structure for catering including three pricing tiers and more. Our recommendations were embraced by the College and used in a detailed Request for Proposal which was developed by our team and sent to qualified foodservice providers. PKC facilitated the entire RFP process from issuing the RFP, facilitating the pre-bid meeting, evaluating the proposals, facilitating the finalist interviews as well as the contract negotiations. Lynn University recently signed a new contract with one of these providers.

Projects & References

Brigham Young University Idaho
College of Saint Benedict
Concordia College
Ferris State University
Johns Hopkins Health Systems
Montcalm Community College
St. Bonaventure University
San Jose State University
SUNY Cortland
University of Colorado Boulder
University of Richmond
University of New Hampshire
Wellesley College

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