The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

The Student News Site of Roger Williams University

The Hawks' Herald

New just baked vending machines

Just Baked” kiosk located in the North Campus Residence Hall .
Josh Geaughan
“Just Baked” kiosk located in the North Campus Residence Hall .

New to campus life this year are the two new “Just Baked” kiosks, with one located in the North Campus Residence Hall (NCRH) common room and the other one located in Baypoint residence hall. These two Kiosks, along with a smaller one in the Center for Student Development, provide students with 24 hour access to warm food on campus. 

The machines use either Hawk Dollars or debit cards, allowing students to use their dining plan options 24/7 and not requiring students to pay out-of-pocket like most vending machines. 

Currently the machines can rotate through 15 meal options with five being able to be used at a time. However, the machine in NCRH has seven options. The Just Baked app allows students to order ahead and pick up their order on the go.

The vending journey started last year with the kiosk at the Center for Student Development, seen by the administrators as a test run for the “Just Baked” idea.

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According to James Gubata, the General Manager of Bon Appetit at RWU, the first trail run was a success with the vending machine selling out the 65 compartments the machine is able to hold every day. With the clear success (and profit) of the kiosk in the Center for Student Development, Dr. John King, the Vice President for Student Life looked to expand “Just Baked” across the whole campus. 

The machines are operated by the Bon Appetit staff, and they perform regular service on the machines and load them with new options daily, said Gubata.  The machines use ready to load (RTL) packaging that slots right into the kiosk with no culinary preparation needed from the Roger WIlliams Dining staff, saving both time and money while still providing fresh food to students. 

Gubata noted, “These machines will be able to not only provide convenient snack food like pizzas, calzones, and cookies but it should migrate into healthy choices.” 

Gubata also spoke about the future direction of the Just Baked machines, hoping to introduce healthier options in the future. 

Since the two new kiosks at NCRH and Baypoint have just started up for the new year, the administration does not have much data on their use, but depending on the sales that they amass, there is a possibility that they will be moved to different locations in the future, said Gubata. 

Students’ responses to the kiosks are mostly positive, noting the ease of access and the quality of the food. 

“It was very easy to use, that’s one thing that I thought was very fun. The actual way the food comes out is very cool with the display and the lights.” commented Lauren Kuchar. 

Tyler Tatro agreed with its convenience, “It was easy to use. I like how you can use Hawk Dollars and they have a good selection of food so if you need something real quick it’s convenient.” 

Although students’ responses were mostly positive, there are still a few downsides to the kiosks, namely a few accounts of people ordering one meal and getting something completely different. 

Still the ease of access and the quality of food seems to make up for the little faults of the machine, especially after midnight where both Upper Commons and Lower Commons are closed. Overall the future seems bright for the Just Baked line on campus as more adjustments and additions to the process will be made.

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