WILMINGTON -- Some UNC Wilmington faculty and students are voicing their concern about a big decision on campus: which coffee company gets the contract? Starbucks and Folks Cafe are in the running to bring their blend of coffee to the William Madison Randall Library on UNCW's campus. Coffee enthusiasts like creating writing graduate student David Harris Gershon want to know who gets the final say? Gershon said, "Now the decision is about to be made. UNC hasn't made transparent the process, and faculty members made requests that have been ignored trying to find out who's making the final decision on campus." In December Gershon formed a petition, rallying support for locally-owned Folks Cafe. Approximately 1,300 students and facility members signed it -- that gave the small-town folks a shot against big corporation Starbucks. He says he's been kept in the loop -- until now. "They indicated the process would remain open as a decision was made. Unfortunately faculty and students have been shut out of the process," Gershon said. Now he wants their voices to be heard. Gershon said, "UNCW would admit this coffee shop is for students and faculty, and they really want to make sure that their voice is heard as this decision come down in the next two weeks." Gershon says he's tried contacting administration for the last few weeks and has received no response. NewsChannel 3 tried calling and e-mailing several faculty members involved in the decision-making process, but we haven't yet heard back. We also spoke to the owner of Folks Cafe. Alan Swart says he's flattered his coffee shop is being considered.
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