Stanford Dining: Working together to support our students

Jan. 16, 2018, 3:00 a.m.

All of us at Residential & Dining Enterprises (R&DE) Stanford Dining, including our valued employees represented by SEIU Local 2007, share the passion of students and the university community to make Stanford the best possible institution. Essential to our mission is ensuring a safe workplace for our staff, including a strong compensation package, training and professional development opportunities and respect.

Working diligently to fill open positions.

Stanford Dining faces the same significant recruiting challenges as other employers in the Bay Area and is pursuing several avenues to recruit and retain skilled workers, including seeking referrals from employees and the Union to identify qualified candidates. We also regularly participate in job fairs and work with local colleges, trade and high schools and community organizations to recruit talented staff.

We rely on casual and temporary employees to fill vacancies and encourage them to apply for regular positions, which are posted in the dining halls and online. Indeed, a significant number of our current regular employees initially worked at the University as casual employees. We also encourage students to apply for positions to supplement staff in our dining halls.

Compensation set by Union contract.

The University has negotiated a contract with SEIU Local 2007 that covers the front-line staff of Stanford Dining including wages, benefits and other terms of their employment. Under that contract, Dining staff receive comprehensive health insurance, retirement benefits and wages consistent with Stanford’s living wage program, with a built-in increase each year.

We are proud of the compensation provided to our valued employees. It is important to note that our dining program is funded from meal plan purchases by students, faculty and staff, and not by the University endowment.

Dining workers have opportunities for training and promotion.

Our employees have many opportunities to learn, develop and be promoted.  For example,

  • Stepping Stones to Success is a program founded by R&DE in 2002, offers language classes, including English, General Education Diploma, college preparatory courses, citizenship prep and certificate programs. Employees may use STAP funds to pay for the courses, which are open to all University employees.
  • Training for Culinary Excellence, a job training program, teaches food service workers the job skills necessary to be successful at the next food service worker level. In the last year, we have promoted more than a dozen employees who participated in this program.
  • Sous Chef Apprenticeship provides the skills training workers need to apply for sous chef positions.

These are just a few of the training and development programs offered by Stanford Dining to our staff to provide opportunities for them to advance in their careers.

Working conditions

Stanford Dining is committed to provide a safe and respectful workplace for our employees and, as issues arise in the workplace, to investigate concerns raised and take all appropriate remedial measures. We are deeply concerned about allegations made in the Daily about unfair treatment of our workers. Unfortunately, many of these concerns have not been raised with Stanford Dining, either formally through the grievance procedure or informally through our discussions with the Union.

Under both our agreement with the Union and University policy, the Union or employees may directly raise concerns of unfair treatment at work. The Union may also raise concerns about workplace issues during our monthly “summits” between Stanford Dining and the Union; this is the agreed upon process. We encourage the Union to raise any concerns directly with Stanford Dining so that they can be addressed. We also want to reassure our employees that they may raise concerns without fear of retaliation.

The way forward

The entire Stanford Dining team cares about the students we serve, and we appreciate the interest and concern that students have raised.

We encourage you to get to know the staff in your dining halls — frontline workers, managers and Dining Ambassadors — to gain a complete perspective on their work. We also encourage the ASSU Senate and the Graduate Student Council to engage in a process that ensures thorough research, in this case, hearing from employers like Stanford Dining, before drawing conclusions and recommending action.

Our goal is always to enhance the work environment for our staff. We want to answer your questions and we welcome your ideas about how to recruit more talented staff (regular and student positions). A number of our most successful programs began as ideas brought to us by students.

On behalf of the entire Stanford Dining team, thank you for your support.  We look forward to continuing to provide a supportive workplace for our staff and to serving you and the entire Stanford community.

— R&DE Stanford Dining Leadership Team


Contact R&DE Stanford Dining via Jocelyn Breeland, Executive Director for Strategic Communications, at jocelyn4 ‘at’

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