Â£300,000 investment in South Tyneside College
Nearly Â£300,000 has been invested to help students fuel up and relax between lectures at South Tyneside College.
The cash - a £280,000 facilities upgrade - has been used to improve the main Eat canteen and a smaller food and drink hub at the college’s Westoe campus in South Shields.
Eat has been rebranded as The Dock, and the section’s existing Costa coffee outlet turned into a Starbucks.
A second onsite Costa, at the college’s Learning Resource Centre, remains, with a refreshments area around it rebranded as a new-style Bakehouse.
Bakehouse will provide a mix of grab-and-go drinks and food, including original dishes.
The investment has been made by national catering company Sodexo which operates at the campus.
Alison Maynard, principal of South Tyneside College, said: “It is important that the high-quality learning students enjoy is complemented by similarly excellent down-time.
“Delivering inspired learning is our priority, and that can be best achieved when students are able to enjoy the overall experience of being at college.
“That means providing services outside that inspire them to be that more focused when they return to their classrooms or workshops.
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“Sodexo’s investment is significant and reflects the strong and long-term relationship we together enjoy for the benefit of our students.”
Sodexo account manager Eamonn Murphy said: “This investment is great news for students and for staff.
“The facilities we delivered were first-class, but we recognised we could enhance that through a greater variety of product.
“Students come to college to learn, but they also need down time that is inspiring to them and adds to the student experience.
“We have taken on board feedback from them and partly designed our new offer around that.
“This investment is part of our long-term support for the college in which we will move from being a provider of services to a highly-valued partner.”
Overall, Sodexo has invested £500,000 at South Tyneside and on smaller upgrades at Tyne Metropolitan College (TyneMet), North Tyneside, and Queen Alexandra Sixth Form College, in North Shields.
All three sites are part of Tyne Coast College, formed in 2017 from the merger of South Tyneside College and TyneMet.