America isn’t the only thing that runs on Dunkin’. On Oct. 8, the University of New Hampshire’s (UNH) on-campus Dunkin’s reopening was met with hordes of excited students and long lines. The store is currently operating under reduced hours: Monday – Friday 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
This is the first time the location has been open since UNH’s campus shut down due to COVID-19 in spring 2020. It originally remained closed due to the pandemic but the delay was prolonged by staff shortages. However, anticipation for its return began to build when Dunkin’ representatives started handing out $5 gift cards to students in the Memorial Union Building (MUB) mid-semester.
“I’m pretty excited. I didn’t get to experience Dunkin’ on-campus [last year]. But I’m a true New Englander so I enjoy Dunkin’ Donuts very much,” said sophomore German major Maddie Smith. Smith recalled her fond memories associated with the store such as her and her sister’s almost decade-long tradition of ordering a plain bagel with cream cheese and a French vanilla latte every time they’re at the Manchester airport.
First-year business administration major and Massachusetts native Emma Guagnini also echoed the sentiment, saying, “I feel like it’s a little taste of home.”
Students also praised the store for its convenient location.
“I am mainly excited about not having to walk 15 plus minutes to either get a coffee, or go to work, especially in the cold mornings,” said Dunkin’ employee and sophomore cyber security major Garrett King. They explained a lot of extra work went into preparing the location as it had not been cleaned since its initial shutdown. This was made more difficult due to the continued lack of staff.
New Hampshire is one of the top three states struggling the hardest to fill jobs in the ongoing U.S. labor shortage, according to an Insider article. Because of this Dunkin’s UNH and Durham locations will be borrowing staff from each other to make up for the shortage. King is part of this exchange and will be working at the Durham location during the weekends.
However, King is proud of the teamwork their fellow employees have shown preparing for and dealing with opening day. There were a few hiccups with some supplies running out and the store being busier than expected. King recalled multiple times when the line extended out of their sight but highlighted the patience of customers in making the process go smoother.
“They were also very understanding which was really nice,” said King. “I want to thank all our customers [on Monday] and in the future for being all-around amazing.”
Students were also quick to express their appreciation for Dunkin’s employees.
“I feel like it’s really good for them, and they should feel really proud of themselves because a lot of us are really grateful they’re finally open,” said Guagnini.
Students interested in working at Dunkin’ can find applications outside the MUB location.
Photo courtesy of Isabelle Curtis//TNH Staff.