Starbucks interior caption 'the line for the campus starbucks on the 1st day of class' (l) Starbucks sign hung in window (c) line inside Starbucks caption 'the line for the campus starbucks on the 1st day of class' (r)

Everyonephoto Studio/Shutterstock @ktgotkooties/TikTok (Licensed)

‘I just know the baristas are in peak mode always’: Busy Starbucks on college campus with only 2 baristas sparks debate

‘And there’s 2 19 yr old baristas working with no experience who just are trying to get to class as well.’


Melody Heald


School’s back in session for the fall semester, and that means hoards of university students in need of caffeine, lining up at the coffee shops on their campuses to grab a cup of coffee. A TikToker captured the toll that may have on the workers tasked with running such locations.

TikToker Katie (@ktgotkooties) filmed the line at the University of Georgia Tate Center’s Starbucks. The line is out the door, and Katie notes it’s the first day of classes. Only two baristas are featured in the video running the store.

@ktgotkooties #uga ♬ Not me starting a TikTok trend purrrrr – Prestonisoverparty

The video was viewed over 395,000 times as of Monday. Viewers shared their experiences with the long lines at Starbucks locations on their college campuses, including the one at UGA. “Girl no literally I’ve been studying here for two hours and the line has not died down AT ALL,” one said of the Starbucks featured in Katie’s video.

But many viewers also focused on the pressure the college campus baristas are under while seemingly dealing with a constant rush of customers. Viewers pointed to the two featured in Katie’s video and noted that they are probably also students. “And there’s 2 19 yr old baristas working with no experience who just are trying to get to class as well,” one said.

“I just know the baristas are in peak mode always,” another commented.

“As a barista I’d cry,” a third stated.

According to multiple reports there are 300 Starbucks locations on college campuses. Being overworked and understaffed is a common complaint among workers, with Starbucks Workers United, the collective of workers helping stores unionize, arguing on its site that workers are unable to reach their “full potential if we are understaffed, overextended, exhausted, and burned-out.” So far, roughly 200 out of the 9,000 stores in the U.S. have reportedly voted to unionize. Some of those stores include locations around big universities. The Daily Texan spoke with several workers of a location near the University of Texas after their store became the second in the state to unionize. “A lot of us are students, and it’s hard for us to support ourselves without working 40 hours a week (and) also being full-time students,” one worker and student, Amanda Garcia, told the student newspaper.

The Daily Dot reached out to Katie for comment via TikTok comment.

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