After one week into Temple University’s major shift to online classes, campus is visibly quiet. A majority of students have moved out, as the University has declared the closing of residencehalls last week.
As many of us pack our bags and head home, the student population dwindles day by day.
For those of us left on campus however, many are wondering how and where we’re getting our meals from. Dining halls as well as most university buildings will be nearly entirely closing soon according to Temple’s website, and restaurants are shutting down for the time being, according to Governor Tom Wolfe’s announcement.
So this begs the question, what about our iconic food trucks?
As a staple on Temple’s campus, will they be staying for the minority of students still here? Most, unfortunately, don’t give very hopeful answers.
Richie’s Lunch Box, the Halal carts, and the Chop! Chop! Lunch Truck have all stated that sometime this week, they’ll be closing their trucks, for both the health of the customers and somewhat more pressingly, their loss of income.
Jim Amzovski, the part-owner of Fame’s Famous Pizza, noted that the lack of students on campus is translating to a striking loss of business.
“We’re planning on staying as long as we can, until they tell us to leave. Cause we really have no choice, they’re still forcing us to pay the rent,” Amvoski noted.
Amvoski also stated that in the wake of losing so much business, he may be facing serious financial loss. Even though he is forced to be staying on campus.
“I don’t think we can even pay our bills that are coming in. I still don’t know how long we’re gonna last,” Amvoski said.
This leads to the question, then, with food trucks closing fast and campus meals dwindling, where are students getting their meals?
Amelia Caston, a sophomore nursing major, is living on campus throughout the campus shutdown.
“Now that dining halls and food trucks are closing, I’m being forced to go to Fro-Gro [Fresh Grocer] and cook meals for myself. But it’s getting harder to grocery shop now that everything is always sold out” Caston claims.
With Fresh Grocer’s lack of supply to meet the demand, students much like Caston who are still on campus are nervous about their dwindling sources of food.
Temple University has announced on its Instagram page however that students can access a limited version of the Cherry Pantry outside of Morgan South, which will enable students to pick up one bag of groceries during allotted hours.
Even still, as the COVID-19 situation develops and grows, more and more students are leaving campus. This as well as the growing fear of the pandemic spells out trouble for our local food trucks.