Changes to eateries dismiss deeper issues

Dining Services is ushering in changes to the main campus dining areas in response to student requests, but other demands have gone unheeded.

Students can expect to see the return of old favorites in the form of a make-you-own-wok station in Market Square and a rolled sushi station in 1873. The recently installed frozen yogurt machine in Market Square has proved popular, prompting lines of students looking to satisfy their sweet tooth. In addition, new sandwich options have been added to the menu and more salad choices are in the works.

A Dining Services official said the changes are being implemented in response to student concerns. Officials’ willingness to meet with students, listen to their concerns and respond with actions is commendable, but the bigger issues regarding the dining plan are still not being addressed. Students are still expressing discomfort over the limitations of the Frog Bucks system. Considering students’ hectic schedules, it is inconvenient to walk to Market Square for every meal, and yet students are expected to use their Frog Bucks currency, a small portion of the dining plan, on all other campus eateries and off-campus restaurants, which are more accessible to students rushing to class or meetings. Students who want to opt for take-out have to fill out a form 48 hours in advance – a request that must be approved by Residential Services. Though a well-intentioned effort to help students, this new mechanism does not fix the problem.

Even though it is understandable that the dining plan cannot change overnight, the university should not dismiss more substantial changes but consider them for next academic year, if not next semester. A university should look out for students’ best interests, and the number of students criticizing the dining plan is not negligible. Officials and students should continue dialogue to find a middle ground.

News editor Julieta Chiquillo for the editorial board.