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The Student Media Site of Georgia College & State University

Bobcat Multimedia

The Student Media Site of Georgia College & State University

Bobcat Multimedia

The mediocrity of the Max

Did all the new renovations actually make the Max better?
Food at the Max/ Drew Oldham

In 2022, GC flaunted the renovations it made to the Maxwell Student Union. On its website, it invites students to come enjoy the modern and comfortable dining hall that was given a makeover with new food and furniture and more comfortable lighting that enhances the quality of its ambience. 

Despite these renovations, which have improved many aspects of the Max, many inadequacies that I believe were more important have — still — yet to be addressed

“You can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig” is an old saying which basically means you can change the look or feel of something, but it is still fundamentally the same as it was before. 

An instance where I see the truth in this saying is when I make my twice-daily trip to the Max. You can renovate the inside, put up new signs, get fancy new grills and even add a few more options, yet it is still the same Max that it has always been. 

One inadequacy that the improvements failed to address is that the food is still extensively processed and extraordinarily high in fat and sodium. One simply cannot eat a high protein and filling diet of food at the Max without consuming copious amounts of preservatives and empty calories. 

This is largely due to a lack of availability for viable alternatives. The grilled chicken at the salad bar is discolored and inedible. It is making me queasy just thinking about it, and I am generally someone with an iron stomach. 

If you cannot bear to stomach this grilled chicken but still want meat, the only choices available to you on an average day are the heavily salted meat offered at the stir fry station, lunch meat at the sandwich station, a burger that is extremely high in fat and cholesterol or some salt-ridden pepperoni or sausage on the pizza at Milla Villa. 

The troubling thing is that all these proteins are offered alongside equally salty and fatty complementary foods. The pasta, fries and noodles are all heavily salted as well. 

I cannot even imagine trying to eat here with a dietary restriction. The vegan station often offers nothing more than a single vile concoction of mystery meat substitute. The gluten-free substation does the same. 

You can change the appearance of the stations and improve the stovetops and equipment, but this does not matter if you do not have workers to operate them. Understaffing remains an issue at the Max, as oftentimes, only a few of the stations are actually open while I eat there. 

This is due to a lack of workers available to keep the stations open. Many days, there is only one worker — or none — at a station; these stations have two or three workers attending them when they are at full capacity.

I wish that instead of making the place look pretty, GC would have engaged a more practical solution to the Max’s important problems, like understaffing, limited options and the impossibility of truly eating healthy. The aesthetic renovations did little to improve the actual areas where this dining hall is lacking.

GC needs to direct future improvements of this facility to these issues to actually improve the experience of eating here rather than just making a bad experience look prettier. 


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