By: Regina Wright ~Campus News Editor~
Xavier recently garnered national attention for installing the first Pizza ATM in North America.
Located in Fenwick Place, the ATM charges $9 for all pizzas and offers two types, pepperoni and cheese. Auxiliary Services are planning to add five more pizza types, but the machine could hold up to 70 different types. It’s open 24/7 to provide students with late-night food.
“We wanted to find something that would make sense financially and that would be high-quality because we are a high-quality food service option, and that’s why we selected and tried to be innovative and take a risk with the ATM,” Dr. Jude Kiah, Assistant Vice President of Auxiliary Services said.
The ATM, including its installation and the enclosure built around it, cost under $60,000. According to a conservative estimate made by Pro-forma, if the ATM were to sell 40 pizzas a day, it would pay for itself in a year to a year and a half.
It holds up to 70 pizzas, and each pizza is made fresh daily by Hoff Dining workers. When a pizza is ordered, the ATM raises the pizza on a disk and cooks it for two minutes by convection.
When it’s done, the pizza is dropped into the box, with a knife included, and comes out of the slot. The entire ordering process takes three minutes.
To prepare for the arrival of the ATM, a French chef came to Xavier to teach five workers how to prepare the pizzas. Xavier is also now a nationally credited pizza chef school and will begin teaching people how to make the specific type of pizza the ATM sells and Hoff offers to students.
The ATM and Xavier have gained significant recognition by media outlets, being covered by the New York Times, Buzzfeed, Fox News, Good Morning America, Today and many others.
“In the first 72 hours after the press came out on this, we had 7000 mentions and 17.5 million views of Xavier University in Ohio because of the pizza ATM,” Kiah said. “That kind of publicity for the university, having gained that much national exposure, was positive for every member of our campus, and I’m deeply proud of us taking this kind of risk.”
“We were wildly overwhelmed. We did not realize what kind of response that this was going to get from local, regional and national media. The response has been so viral and we welcome it because it is super positive for the university, and we want student to know we are cutting edge, innovative and high-quality.”
The official opening of the ATM will be on Sept. 8.
“Because we were first we are still ironing out all the operations; making the transactions, adding readers, fixing all the technology involved in it. It’s first, so it has bugs in it and we are trying to work those out, and we stay on top of them any time of the day,” Kiah said.
“I’m so glad our school is gaining recognition from something so unique,” junior Occupational Therapy major Jordan Hendershot said. “It’s super convenient to be able to pick up a pizza on campus rather than having to pay for one to be delivered and to wait a long time.”