Savannah State University students are demanding better management of their dining services after several posts on social media describing heinous sanitation conditions went viral.
“I'm laughing because the school does not care about students,” said Derek Iguwe, homeland security freshman. “Before I came to Savannah State, I heard rumors about the food. Principle is, think about the students…We need better services.”
Iguwe said the Tiger Express and King-Frazier Café were not enough to redeem the school for its problems with the Student Union.
In mid-January, a student posted a video on Twitter showing a roach crawling through cheese on display at Austin Grill. “This was just in the U #ssu,” the caption said. In the past, other posts have shown a tank of macaroni and cheese being stirred while it sits on the floor at the Union, and moldy bread being served in the Café.
In response to several phone calls and the posts online, the university temporarily closed the Student Union for “maintenance and cleaning,” according to a statement from the university.
Danny Moore, a freshman majoring in behavior analysis, said she wants Savannah State to act like other HBCUs.
“Upon coming here, I felt bad. Not only do they expect us to pay all this money but eat this disgusting food. How long has this been happening?” she said.
Moore said she’d like to see the university bring more off-campus options to the students, similar to Morehouse University, Spelman College or Clark Atlanta University offers.
Ravion Hayden, a junior computer science major, said “In regards to the U, I feel like it should not have been broadcast…There is nothing we can do with such a large student body and few eateries. It can get hectic, but just be cautious. Dining halls should have better means of supervision.”
In days following the incident, Savannah State released amended dining facility hours. Most dining hall hours were extended to 10 p.m.
“The student union remains closed for maintenance and cleaning. While the process is taking longer than we originally anticipated, we have taken additional measures and asked experts from the health department and a local extermination company to certify the spaces after maintenance and cleaning. They have done so and we are in the final cleaning stage to reopen the facility as quickly as possible. We are taking these additional measures to help ensure the safety and comfort of our students.”