New changes have made their way to the Night Owl Café (NOC) and Owl’s Perch Game Room regarding the hours of operation. This year, the NOC and game room will be closed from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m..
Coordinator of Student Activities and Organizations Britany Gallagher said this decision was a result of analyzing the amount of students that utilize the areas during these hours.
“Since I got here a couple of years ago, one of the things I’ve been doing a lot of in all of my areas is assessing, so taking a look at what practices are currently in place, taking a look at what practices are in place in similar programs or similar functional areas at other institutions, taking a look at usage, so when are we busy, when are we not busy, when are things getting used, whats getting used [and] what things are not getting used,” Gallagher said.
In her assessments, she noticed that between the hours of 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., not very many people would come in. Gallagher also said that staff would be more engaged by changing these hours.
“If you think about it, if you have something that you’re involved in, whether it be a job or a leadership position or something like that, if you’re really just sitting there and not interacting with people or doing something, it gets kind of boring and that doesn’t feel great.”
Gallagher said she feels that it will be a very select few who will be affected by the change in hours. In fact, she said that staff and faculty may notice more of a change because during these hours, they tend to be busy and quickly stop in for a soda or popcorn. She’s noticed this over the past few years from when she sits in the NOC occasionally on her computer to see who’s coming in and when.
KSC junior and NOC team leader Nikki Root has been working for the NOC since her first day at KSC. She said that as a team leader, she helps with the deciding factors such as the change of hours. Seeing it first-hand and working between the hours of 3 p.m. to 7 p.m., Root said that not many people would come in.
“It was kind of wasteful having all that, the lights running… it just saved a lot of money for the college and our materials that we have and it will force people to come in during our shorter hours, so we’ll actually be busier during those hours,” Root said.
Root said that previously, the shifts for the NOC and game room were 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 2 p.m. to5 p.m., 5p.m. to 8 p.m. and 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.. With less hours of operation, this also means less hours for the staff to work.
“We made it clear before we started this school year for all our staff that we would be shortening their hours, and if they aren’t willing to have a little bit less of hours, then they should go find another job if it’s not their top priority,” Root said. “If NOC is one of their top priorities, then they should stay, but understand that they might have less hours and, so far, there hasn’t been any problems about it.”
Both Gallagher and Root mentioned that they are still planning on hiring one or two more people (preferably a first-year, as most of their staff is made of upperclassmen) to add to their team.
The job consists of overseeing both the NOC and the game room, however both places have different tasks. According to Root, in the game room, they sign out equipment and maintain a friendly attitude. In the NOC, they make the popcorn and serve drinks, along with cleaning up after people. Root described this as more of a customer service job.
“I love the NOC, it’s my home, that’s why I’m the team leader… I think everyone else feels the same way that whenever they started, they didn’t want to stop working,” Root said.
KSC junior and double major in English and secondary education Jenna Hall is one student who has already noticed the change in hours. She happened to go to the NOC at 6:55 p.m. for a drink and was told that they were closed.
“I went there at about five minutes of seven to get a drink before an event that I was running. The event started at seven and I wanted to get a drink before hand and I noticed the lights were on and noticed someone was in there, but the sign wasn’t on and the door was closed.”
Hall was told that the NOC was closed and she said that she found it frustrating.
“It was pretty frustrating to me because [on] Mondays and Wednesdays, I have events that I’m apart of that start at seven…but if it’s like five minutes of seven and I’m thirsty, I would prefer to get a free drink than buy something from Lloyd’s just because free is better than spending money and I used to be able to do that but this year I can’t,” Hall explained.
Hall said she guessed that the NOC changed its hours either because of money or because of not having enough people to work. She had a few suggestions for what the NOC could do in the future.
“I would say, even if it’s just the drink section that’s open, have it open, like dont have the period of the day that it’s closed, especially in that late afternoon into early evening time because that’s when a lot of people are not in classes and tend to be hanging out and if someone wants a free drink, then they should be able to do so,” Hall said.
Grace Pecci can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org