Dining Transitions


In September of 2021, WWU’s 10-year dining services contract with Aramark expires. Over the next year and a half, we have a number of important decisions to make and opportunities to consider as a community. As we move through these processes, this website will be an evolving resource, with definitions, facts and figures, timelines, and guides to the processes and regulations, and other important information.

Key Questions

Self-operated or a new contract?

Self-operated dining services are wholly-owned and operated by the university.
Contracted dining services are managed by an external organization on behalf of the university, under the negotiated terms of a contract.

Both systems are common in college and university settings. In Washington, Western and Evergreen State College are currently contracted services, and UW, WSU, EWU, and CWU are self-operated. Self-operated campuses may also include some smaller contract services—often independent franchises of national chains.

As we think about the future of dining on Western’s campus, we will explore all the options, looking for the best fit for students.


What's the timeline

June 2019

Feasibility Study commissioned from Envision StrategiesItem complete



Sept. 2019




Jan. - Mar. 2020

Community conversations on Feasibility Study



Apr. 2020 - Aug. 2021

Dining Implementation Committee (including student representation) convenes

Implementation period for either transition to self-operation or preparing and bidding the Request for Proposal (RFP) for a contract






Sept. - Oct. 2021

September 30 - Current contract expires

October 1 - Dining transition complete




How can I be involved?

There will be many ways to be part of the process. Right now, in the information gathering phase of the process, attend a Community Conversation and provide your feedback—the schedules will be posted on this website, as well as being publicized broadly through Western’s media channels.

Send an email to Melynda Huskey, VP for Enrollment & Student Services, with your observations, priorities, questions, and ideas.

Participate in a survey (more to come on that in January).

Talk to your AS VP for Student Services, Emily Gerhardt, about your perspective. If you live in a residence hall, talk to your RHA representative.