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  • Doily Allergen

Seaman Center Robotics Lab Commissioned To Fill Worker Shortage


robots at burge dining hall

University of Iowa students have been complaining for a while now about how depressing it is to eat off of paper plates in Burge dining hall, how annoying the slow lines at Kinnick are, and how sorry they feel for the overworked nurses at UIHC, even if they aren’t sorry enough to get vaccinated. Unfortunately, the University’s plans of asking employees to volunteer their Saturday to work the football game, or removing all reusable dishware from Burge have still not fixed the problem. And so, the University thought of a solution.


Though the university has not announced this solution and doesn’t plan to until it is well underway, the investigative team here at the Allergen went above and beyond to bring you this report, in a way that did not involve breaking into a secret room in the Old Capitol Museum and digging around an old filing cabinet from the nineties. Transcribed below is said plan.

  1. Ask the Seaman Center Robotics Lab to make a shit ton of robots.

  2. Force every dining hall employee to work at either CAMBUS, an entry level hospital position, or at Kinnick stadium, with training on the job.

  3. Force every formerly-entry-level hospital employee to become a nurse, with training on the job.

  4. Use the shit ton of robots to run the dining halls.

  5. Shortage solved!

  6. Begin replacing CAMBUS drivers with robots. Tell the students whose income you’ve taken away that they can get a job at the hospital or Kinnick.

  7. Don’t hire them at Kinnick or the hospital.

  8. Replace everyone working at the hospital and Kinnick with robots.

  9. Except the doctors and nurses, who are now numerous enough to sustain a profit for the University, but not numerous enough that the workers can have a day off.

  10. Begin creating new, unnecessary jobs for students to work.

  11. Replace those jobs with robots as well.

  12. The most important step: At no point, ever, offer your employees higher pay, more benefits, or a better work environment.

While the plans are very detailed and highly technical, whether or not they will be implemented is still up in the air. One robotics student told the Allergen, “I’m not sure why the University thinks we are going to do this for them. They came up to us and offered us $2,000 plus materials to build these robots, like that was a lot. $2,000! For something that is going to take our team of eight at least a whole semester of undivided effort.”


When asked if they were worried about their own job being replaced in this campaign, they answered, “Not really. We have, like, one actual robotics engineer working here. The rest of us are undergrad students. If the University thinks that we are going to be able to produce even one functioning potato-scooping robot, much less mass-produce them…” They started laughing and continue to laugh as of the completion of this article.

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