Southeast Missouri State University student publication

Boost App allowing students to online order at Panda Express

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

A new app is giving students the opportunity to skip the line at a dining facility on campus by allowing them to make online orders ready to pick up as scheduled.

The Boost app allows students to pick what food they want, the time they want to get it and pay all through the online ordering app. Panda Express is the first to open for online ordering, but there are future plans of expanding it to the Redhawk Market, Subway, Starbucks and Chick-fil-A.

The Boost app accepts flex dollars, Redbucks and credit. Students who use the Boost app do not need to wait in lines.

“Students who order online go to the side and tell the cashiers, that you have a booster order,” Marketing and Student Engagement director Alicia Ticer said. “You then show your order on your phone, which confirms that you bought it. Your food is already waiting on you, so once you confirm it you get to just pick it up and go. ”

Freshman Bailey McKain is among the few students who have already used the app.

“I’m always on the go, so I saw that you could online order at Panda Express. I gave it a try and was really happy on how easy it was to use the app and how I managed to skip out on a long line,” McKain said. “I really hope that all on-campus places begin to do this because I think ordering online is a more effective and resourceful way for students to get their food now.”

The Boost app runs in 24 hours increments. Students can order anytime of the day for a specific time. Panda Express doesn’t open until 11 a.m.,but you're allowed to make an order starting at 8 a.m. and pick a time to come pick it up. Availability for pickup is only during operation hours of Panda Express.

“It saves you time so you can take control of your day,” Ticer said.

The idea for this app was a joint venture for the food staff. Ticer said Southeast is always looking for new technology to make dining faster and easier for students.

“If you walk through any of the food facilities on campus you notice long lines. This brought about the idea of the boost app,” Ticer said.

“We worked with the university and looked at Chartwell’s as a whole to see how we can make it easier and to eliminate some of those long wait times or lines that our students are constantly telling us about,” Ticer said. “The boost app has worked very well for other Chartwell accounts throughout the United States, so we’re hoping it will here as well.”

Workers at Panda Express have gone through training sessions on how online ordering works.

“You want to make sure you are following instructions through the entire process and pay for it so that you can see your order has been confirmed and the workers understand that you have used the boost app rather than waiting in line,” Ticer said.

Ticer said once an order is made it shoots out a receipt to the employees from a separate printer, so they know to watch that printer. Once workers receive the receipt, the food is prepared for the pickup time requested.