Blanton Hall residents no longer have to exit the building to cook. In January, the hall officially opened a new community kitchen where students can cook, bake, eat and meet new people.
Blanton Hall Community Director Thea Dyer believes the new kitchen is a big contribution to enhancing the building.
“The community kitchen is a great addition to Blanton Hall,” Dyer said. “We look forward to utilizing this space with the residence life staff and campus partners to provide educational and community building programming that will benefit residents of the building.”
Students waited a significant amount of time for the community kitchen. It was proposed by a previous Blanton Hall council executive board and was designed to assist residents during break times when limited dining options are available.
Funds to complete the kitchen were approved for the 2018-2019 academic year. Now, Blanton Hall is the sixth residence hall on campus to have one. It joins Bohn, Russ, Sinatra, Dinallo Heights, and Machuga Heights.
The kitchen has updated appliances including a magnetic stove, only allowing magnetic pots and pans to be used. However, students are given the flexibility to borrow the building’s cooking utensils or to bring their own.
Junior film major Charlie Wiggins believes the new kitchen is a good amenity but can have its downfalls.
“It’s nice to have as an option here, but I don’t think it’s very practical to use that often,” Wiggins said. “Checking out equipment is a bit of a hassle, and there’s no time slots to use it. It’s like first-come, first-serve.”
Unlike the other residence hall kitchens, Blanton Hall has stricter security measures. In order to borrow the cookware, residents must give their student identification card to a service assistant on duty. An assistant then walks with them to the kitchen, and they unlock the cabinets containing the type of cookware the student needs.
One of the kitchen’s strongest benefits is that it’s open 24/7, giving residents the opportunity to cook when many eateries on campus are closed. This allows Blanton residents who are up late studying to not go hungry.