Tuesday Midday Learning Opps

NACUBO LIVE Supported by Sodexo

Robots on Campus: Supporting, Shaping, and Enriching Campus Culture

  • Tuesday, July 16
  • 10:15 AM - 11:45 AM
  • Austin Conv Center
  • Level 1, Ballroom C
  • IT


Mark Kraner

Executive Director for Campus Retail Operations

George Mason University

Fairfax, Virginia

Kevin Rettle

Vice President, Global Offer Development


Purcellville, Virginia


Today’s students understand the benefits of technology and expect it to be integrated into campus life. Earlier this year, Sodexo partnered with Starship Technologies to develop a self-driving delivery robot program that launched at George Mason University. The small, six-wheeled robotic pods, each capable of carrying 25 pounds, travel at top speeds of nearly four miles per hour to deliver food all over campus. In this session, speakers from George Mason University and Sodexo will share the story of how the robot fleet made its way onto campus and quickly became a sensation that resonated with students, faculty, and staff. They will discuss the development process—which included working with stakeholders, student groups, and others to communicate the benefits of the robot fleet—and program results. Because innovation can sometimes be met with hesitation, they will also address how the university overcame barriers to adoption and positioned this technology as a commercial solution to an ongoing need, a differentiator for the campus, and a tool for student engagement.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand how technology can seamlessly integrate with campus culture to add value and enhance convenience
  • Recognize the value of technology as a differentiator and a tool for recruitment, engagement, and retention
  • Identify strategies for overcoming potential barriers to the introduction of new technology on campus