Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Coffee and controversy: UH Manoa welcomes second Starbucks

The new Starbucks sparked excitement in some, outrage in others
Josslyn Rose
Gateway Cafe is now home to UHM’s second Starbucks location. Audio Description: The left door of Gateway Cafe’s entrance advertises the new Starbucks location. On the right door, a Starbucks logo sits above the words “NOW OPEN.” Beneath it is a sign that says “Come on in. Starbucks Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri 7:00 am – 9:00 pm. Sat-Sun 9:00 am – 9:00pm.” On the left door a sign says “Gateway Cafe Hours of Operation. Breakfast Mon-Fri 7:00 to 10:00 A.M. Lunch Mon-Fri 11:00 to 2:00 P.M. Dinner Mon-Thur 5:00 to 7:30 P.M. HOLIDAYS: Brunch Only 10:30 A.M. to 1:30 P.M.

The new Starbucks location at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa is generating quite a buzz. After its soft opening on Jan. 17, it’s drawing mixed reactions from students and staff.

Many students were pleased to welcome another Starbucks on campus, with proximity being a major appeal. Its location inside of Gateway Cafe places it much closer to student housing than the Campus Center location.

“Having a closer Starbucks was a lot nicer,” said business major Jordan Julich, who is among several regular customers who come nearly every day. “And then having something open on the weekends is going to be a lot better as well.”

Besides the dining halls, most food and drink locations are closed on the weekends. In addition to being open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays, this Starbucks is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekends.

The new store has also provided more student jobs.

“Everywhere on campus didn’t really hire or you had to apply like a full semester earlier,” said barista Maggie Velasco. “And so it’s really good to have the opportunity.”

Some people, like Gateway Cafe cashier Lauren Mau, were more hesitant about the new Starbucks.

“I was surprised and also worried how it would take space into our little restaurant,” said Mau. “But I feel like it was an exciting thing and also like a new thing, a new experience.”

Some were concerned about the possibility of  students sneaking into the dining hall from Starbucks and not use their meal swipes. However, signs are posted reminding students to swipe in, and so far Mau has not seen it to be an issue.

There’s also been controversy around the nationwide chain suing its union, Starbucks Workers United, over its support for Palestinians in the Israel-Hamas war.

The boycott that ensued led some students to question the timing of opening another Starbucks on campus. The Instagram post by @uhmanoanews announcing the new location received a flurry of comments criticizing the decision.

“We shouldn’t support a business okay with genocide,” said social work major Kala‘e Kaluakini. “I wish that UH put a student-managed business similar to the Bean Counter at the Business building.”

Despite criticism, it seems the new Starbucks is here to stay. According to Donna Ojiri, the General Manager of Sodexo at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, renovations to add a seating area and extend the floor tile will take place during the summer of 2024.

“We would like to thank everyone for their patience,” said Ojiri, “As we work through the new store opening issues.”

About the Author: Josslyn Rose is a freshman Journalism major at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa who aims to combine her passions for writing, reading, and public speaking to cover news across the state.

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About the Contributor
Josslyn Rose
Josslyn Rose, Contributor
Aloha! My name is Josslyn Rose and I am a freshman Journalism student at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. I look forward to combining my passions for writing, reading, and public speaking to cover news across the state.

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