Hotspot Thoughts

The+Hotspot+Cafe+used+to+serve+as+a+secondary+cafeteria+for+students.+Ever+since+Covid%2C+it+has+sat+idle.

Lila Vancrum

The Hotspot Cafe used to serve as a secondary cafeteria for students. Ever since Covid, it has sat idle.

Lucy Halverson, Editor-in-Chief

Things at school were much different before Covid. We had Husky Halftime, an absence of E-Hallpasses and the Hotspot Cafe was open. As school has gone back to what was considered normal, all three of those things have changed, arguably the most impactful being the shutdown of the Hotspot Cafe. 

Back when the hotspot was up and running, students were able to quickly access breakfast before school began. Additionally, lunch lines were split between this location and the main lunchroom, allowing lines to move much quicker. 

Now, upon the closure of the Hotspot Cafe, all students must go through the lunchroom line which not only slows down the process of getting lunch, but makes it much more hectic. 

To better understand why the hotspot has been shut down, I talked with Blue Valley’s Director of Food and Nutrition Services, Charles Rathbun. He explained it mainly remains closed due to recent staff shortages and a lack of necessity.

While I understand we are having a staffing issue, there are alternate solutions. For one, the Hotspot Cafe can become student-run. To make sure students do not take advantage of this job, teachers can carefully select the most responsible and willing students. In return for their work at a given lunchtime shift, students could earn community service hours. Or perhaps, operating the Hotspot Cafe can be a part of a class, similar to the Dawg House. This could be a great opportunity for more students to learn about running a business and customer service. 

Another reason the Hotspot is closed, as Rathbun previously described, is because there is a lack of need for it. The kiosk was instituted back when we still had Husky Halftime, and was meant to make lunch lines more efficient. However, with the disappearance of Halftime, the Hotspot is no longer needed to relieve the lunchroom. Though many students, including myself, would like to see the Hotspot reinstituted, the amount of money and many resources Rathbun said it would need to reopen would not be worth the measly profits. 

However, Rathbun said the kiosk has a variety of potential purposes it may serve. The hotspot could be reopened as more of a coffee bar, where drinks and perhaps donuts were sold. Honestly, the Hotspot Cafe could sell anything, food or other items, as long as the student body found usefulness in the products.