Robots to Deliver Food at George Mason University
George Mason University has rolled out a robot food delivery service to cater to the 40,000 students, faculty and staff on its Fairfax, VA campus.
The service, started by Sodexo, Inc. and Starship Technologies, will enable the university community to order food and drinks through the Starship Deliveries app and have their orders delivered anywhere on campus by one of 25 robots for $1.99.
Retailers like Blaze Pizza, Starbucks, and Dunkin’ and 2nd Stop, a Sodexo-branded campus grocery store, are currently participating in the robot delivery service.
“We’re excited that our students, faculty, and staff get to be at the forefront of this pioneering campus food delivery service,” Mark Kraner, executive director for campus retail operations at George Mason University, said.
“This will enhance life for everyone at the University, and that’s something we’re continuously looking to build upon. Our commitment to providing an optimal campus experience is one of the things that distinguishes George Mason University as a place where everyone can thrive.”
After placing an order on the app, a robot, which is capable of carrying up to 20 pounds autonomously, begins making its journey to the customer. Customers can also track the robots via an interactive map.
“College students understand the benefits of technology on campus and expect it to be integrated into their daily lives,” said Ryan Tuohy, SVP of business development at Starship Technologies.
“With the hectic schedules students lead, there is a convenience for students to have their food, groceries and packages delivered. Our goal is to make life a little bit easier for students, whether that means skipping the line, eating lunch on the lawn rather than in the cafe, or finding the time to eat better when studying for exams. Commuter students can even meet the robot on their way into class,” Tuohy added.