The Seaver Plaza Food Court on the Health Sciences Campus opened last week after four months of construction, which had led HSC students and visitors to seek other dining options such as food trucks, students said.
“Before this opened, there were only food trucks or the hospital cafeteria,” said Calvin Cha, a first-year graduate student studying pharmacy. “I was pretty excited about the renovation when I heard that we were getting Panda [Express].”
In addition to Panda Express, the food court now offers Starbucks, Poquito Mas and the Marketplace, which stocks convenience goods and snacks such as fruit and sandwiches.
According to Kris Klinger, director of USC Hospitality, the decision to add these restaurants was to offer more and better choices for dining.
“In the past there were no branded concepts. There were not a lot of good options. Now we have better options than we had in the past,” Klinger said.
Phil Turner, assistant manager of the Starbucks in Seaver Plaza, said he is impressed with the increased quality that customers can expect from the renovated food court.
“I think the brand standards really promote a more consistent dining experience,” Turner said. “The biggest changes are the updated recipes and product selection.”
For hospital staff, faculty and students who frequent the food court, these healthier options are welcome, they said. Still, students without cars, like Cha, said they feel limited.
“Honestly, it’s one of the only places to eat at this school. There’s nothing within walking distance [of HSC],” Cha said.
HSC plans to celebrate the food court’s opening in the coming weeks.
Compared to the old Seaver Food Court and limited options students had before students said, this Seaver Food court is much improved.
“This is a pretty good place to eat,” said Kei-Cheuk Ng, a graduate student studying pharmacy.