Cafe Diem reopens in Center for Academic Engagement

Mercyhurst students are gaining another option on campus as the student-run Café Diem turns over a new leaf this year.

Located in the Center for Academic Engagement, Cafe Diem opened its doors again this year with plans to shake up its menu.

The café attempts to provide first-hand experience to Hospitality Management students by providing them with a management opportunity.

However, because many students do not know where it is located, Ryan Johnson, a Hospitality Management instructor, says that the café could use a little publicity.

Many students are not even aware that it has re-opened this year. “We did that on purpose,” Johnson said. The café has not quite yet implemented many of the changes that are planned for the next few weeks.

The changes this year will come from a host of new features and menu items the café will be offering.

Complaints about the café have consisted of its cash-only system, according to Johnson. This was a problem, as many students do not carry cash on them around campus.

This year, however, the Café Diem plans to have a credit and debit card machine available for customers. Johnson and others involved with the café believe that this will bring in a lot more business.

Fabiola Leon, a senior at Mercyhurst, is in charge of managing the eatery this year.

Since the facility is completely student-run, she is currently working on several ideas to interest students in Café Diem, beginning with expanding the range of food items offered.

With the addition of chicken tenders, pizza logs and macaroni and cheese, as well as chips and salsa, Café Diem expects to have a lot more options in the coming weeks.

“We’re thinking about doing a soup of the week,” said Leon, “like a ‘Weekly Wednesday’ with maybe cream of mushroom or broccoli cheddar, things like that.”

Similar ideas include “Freebie Tuesdays,” featuring a free drink with any meal, smoothie samples with a purchase and monthly food specials.

Since the lobby of the CAE is so large, the Café Diem staff is also thinking about adding Game Nights, Comedy Nights and Trivia Nights.
It is all about attracting customers this year.

The cafe has also expanded its hours. It is now open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.