Einstein Bros. Bagels coming to Krueger Library

Zach Bailey

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Zach Bailey / Winonan

Next fall a new addition will be coming to the Darrel W. Krueger library: Einstein Bros. Bagels.

The project, which has been in talks for around three years, will begin construction this June after the remodel of the Jack Kane Dining Center is finished. Einstein, Bros. Bagels partnered with Caribou Coffee, will be working with Chartwells to make this addition happen. A microwave will also be added to the library.

The project went through four committees within Winona State University’s Student Senate and was immediately intercepted when it came to senate.

“It was considered big when [Student Senate] got the OK to put in a vending machine,” Nicole Zimmerman, next year’s Student Senate president, said. “This was something that the student’s wanted, and it was them who helped us push it through.”

Initially, the idea of the location had been split between placing it in either the library or the main area of the Science Laboratory Center.

“There were too many drawbacks to placing the store in the SLC, so we eventually decided to pursue the library location,” John Sinniger, director of Chartwell’s, said.

According to Zimmerman, the previous dean of library was “anti-food and pop,” but after a 78-percent vote by over 1,000 students during an Assessment Day vote two years ago, students said they wanted more food in the library. The results were similar this past year, causing the project to move quickly.

“There were multiple major barriers to the project,” Zimmerman stated, “but it is finally a real, tangible thing.”

Though the project is gaining mostly positive feedback, one of the major drawbacks has been the thought of students walking through the library just to get food, disrupting the students using the library to study.

However, a solution has been made to avoid this. Einstein’s will be accessible from the outside to cut back on disruption.

Zimmerman said the library workers were not  as receptive to the idea at first, but after realizing that this was what the students wanted, they became more open to the idea.

“We have to remind the university that it is here to serve the students. It wouldn’t exist if not for us,” Zimmerman said. “We pay a lot of money to go here, and if it is not meeting with what the students want, what’s the point?”

Though the Einstein Bros. Bagels will be directed through Chartwells, the food will be the same as the other shops.

In the next month, members of Chartwells and Winona State will be taking the trek out to University of Wisconsin – River Falls to see how their Einstein Bros. Bagels and Caribou Coffee stores were built, how it’s operating and other ideas they can use for the Winona State location.

“Most academic libraries have some sort of coffee shop in them, so it was almost weird that Winona State didn’t have one,” Kenneth Janz, the interim dean of library, said.

Since the library is open until 1 a.m. and it’s where the vast majority of students spend their time, it was the best location for a new food service. Having the location in the library will allow students to quickly grab coffee or a snack from within the library and head back to their study spot.

According to Zimmerman, the Somsen Hall Mugby Junction was not as successful as people initially thought it would be, especially when there are plenty of students who do not go into Somsen Hall, such as nursing students.

Library numbers have been slowly decreasing over the years, and the university is hopeful this will bring numbers back up, Zimmerman said.

Kryzsko Cash will work with this location, however it is unsure if there will be block plan availability.

Regardless of the official details, Janz said the change is a positive one.

Janz said, “I think it’s a good thing for university, for the students and a change that will be good.”