Trinity graduate students, faculty and staff celebrated the grand opening of the Rodine Cafe on January 10, from noon to 1:30 p.m with a ribbon cutting ceremony followed by hors d’oeuvres and live music.
While the cafe is currently referred to as “Rodine Cafe,” the Graduate Student Government Association (GSGA) will be facilitating a process for students to name the cafe, marking it out as a place of their own.
The cafe will be open Monday–Thursday, 9:30 a.m.–2 p.m. and 3:30–6 p.m. These hours cover high-traffic times, such as lunch and class breaks. It will serve fresh coffee from Newport Coffee House, as well as bottled soda, juice, muffins, bagels, fresh fruit, various salads, sandwiches and wraps, and soup-in-a-cup that can be microwaved in the back hallway of Rodine. Cash, credit, and points will be accepted at the Rodine location, but meal exchanges cannot be used.
Creative Dining Supervisor Dave Seweryn said the cafe arose out of a desire for a gathering place on campus for grad students. When the White Horse Inn moved from lower A.T.O. Chapel to the Waybright Center, graduate students responded that they no longer had a convenient commons to call their own. While grabbing coffee or food between classes was important, grad students mainly desired a place to hang out. The staff hired for the Rodine Cafe are also graduate students, according to Seweryn, to encourage more community and an ownership of the location.
The decision to serve Newport Coffee at the cafe was also intentional, providing a way for the Trinity community to support local businesses, according to Seweryn.
The original White Horse Inn location in the chapel was named after the White Horse Inn in Cambridge where theologians of the early Reformation would discuss Luther’s protests and other topics. Seweryn said he hopes the location provides opportunity for greater community and theological discussion.
“It’s not just selling coffee . . . there’s a lot of theology that’s going to take place here,” Seweryn said.
Master of Arts in New Testament student Rory Tyer described Dr. Woodbridge’s enthusiasm about the space for a graduate community.
“Dr. Woodbridge has been part of the TEDS community for many years; I know he’s very excited and grateful to have a dedicated space for TEDS students, so close to where many TEDS classes are taught, where students and faculty can engage one another and build relationships,” Tyer said.
Masters in Intercultural Studies student Ethan Carlson said he plans to use the Rodine Cafe often.
“There’s definitely a ton of convenience in Rodine’s new cafe, which I think everyone appreciates, but the space made for conversation and community is another great part. It’s not a grad student drive-thru, but a place to get to know other students or maybe continue a conversation that started in class,” Carlson said.
The new cafe space is officially open during scheduled hours and available for students and faculty to converse, study, and engage in stimulating discussion.
Tags: coffee, community, Rodine, Students, TEDS, theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
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