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A Starship food delivery robot drives past a Smokey statue on the Hill during a photoshoot for the announcement of their arrival on campus
A food delivery robot drives past a Smokey statue on the Hill.

Last spring, food delivery robots powered by Vol Dining and Starship Technologies debuted at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, zigging and zagging their way across campus to make deliveries to hungry Vols. Thanks to a new partnership with Grubhub, the robots now offer expanded delivery options and new student benefits.

“We are excited to welcome this new partnership to our campus and look forward to serving our students, faculty and staff this year,” said Mohamed Ali, director of Vol Dining. “As always, the customer experience is at the forefront of everything we do at Vol Dining.”

The fleet of food delivery robots will continue to serve campus favorites such as Einstein Bros. Bagels, Starbucks, Raising Cane’s and Union Deli. VolBooks and VolShop items will be added as delivery options in the future. The full list of vendors and hours is available on the Grubhub app (iOS and Android).

The new partnership allows students to activate a free Grubhub+ membership, which provides no-fee delivery on eligible orders, exclusive deals, donation matching at checkout and other benefits.

To place an order, students, faculty and staff will need to download the Grubhub app, select UT as their campus and link their VolCard. They can then select their items and a delivery location. Once the robot arrives, they will receive an alert and can meet and unlock it through the app.


Maggie Palmer (865-974-3993,