Dining Services opens new Starbucks on East Campus

The buzz on campus about the new Starbucks has been growing for over a semester now. It is finally set to have a grand opening on Feb. 5.

Training has officially started for the workers in Cornerstone Coffeehouse that will be transitioning to this new space. While the on-campus Starbucks will still be a Dining Services venue staffed by APU workers, all other aspects of this new addition to East Campus will make it a fully functioning Starbucks location.

Ed Stinchcomb, the Director of Dining Services, spoke about the reasoning for this new addition to East Campus.

“The presence of licensed Starbucks on university campus is a growing higher education trend,” Stinchcomb said. “Brand recognition, convenience and providing a full-service store was a logical next step in the evolution of APU Dining.”

Ashley Gonzales, a senior global studies major and a student worker at Cornerstone, shared her excitement about the change.

“I’m really excited because people will be trained and we’re going to know what we’re doing,” Gonzales said. “I think we are going to be able to finally make the drinks that people are expecting when they come in.”

The new coffee shop will have the complete Starbucks menu, including pastries and all the seasonal drinks. As a Dining Services venue, it will accept dining points and Cougar Bucks, as well as Starbucks gift cards with the Starbucks Rewards program.

Danielle Chiong, a junior political science major, anticipates ordering specialty drinks that Starbucks offers.

“I am looking forward to having a Starbucks because Cornerstone was limited on the drinks it could make, and it didn’t have a lot of my favorites, like green tea frappuccinos,” Chiong said. “Now, I won’t have to leave campus if I’m craving something only sold at Starbucks.”

In order to prepare for the creation of these drinks, the workers are completing their mandatory 40 hours of training in partnership with the Starbucks located on Alosta Ave.

“Training is going great,” Stinchcomb said. “Starbucks barista trainers are spending two weeks on campus training staff. Those completing all training modules will be certified Starbucks baristas. All staff working in the new Starbucks are APU Dining Services employees.”

Students are optimistic about this new addition to East Campus. Since Starbucks is a popular brand name, many students think this transition could even lead to a surge in coffee drinking on campus.

Jasmine Ramjohn, a freshman psychology major, said this change is for the better.

“I feel like it will increase my coffee addiction [because] it is closer to our dorms,” Ramjohn said. “And I’m a gold member, so…”

Stinchcomb speculates the new coffee shop will be very popular, since the customer base will continue to be the APU community.

However, excitement is not the only thing students are feeling about this switch. It seems that seating for the space is a little uncertain.

“I’m a little disappointed,” freshman communication studies major Paige Tobias said. “Just because I have gotten used to coming to Cornerstone to bust out long papers. In the new Starbucks, it really looks like standing room only.”

It has been confirmed that this new venue will indeed lack seating.

“The new Starbucks will not have seating in the facility. Customers are welcome to sit on Cougar Walk or in the adjoining Cougar’s Den,” Stinchcomb said.