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The Blue & Gray Press | August 19, 2019

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Staff Ed: Campus dining plan not fair to freshman class

Staff Ed:  Campus dining plan not fair to freshman class


The current semester brought with hefty changes to the University of Mary Washington’s dining services including new meal plans, new dining hours and new eateries.

As far as meal plans go, we have seen the addition of an anytime meal plan, the required meal plan for all freshman students living one campus.

The anytime meal plan gives students an unlimited amount of meals each semester and $200 in flex, which sounds like a great deal, except that the meals can only be used at the new dining hall located in the University Center.

This means that freshman students are forced to eat solely in the University Center, unless they want to pay for food with flex or eagle one at an on campus retail location. While eating at a retail location regularly is not a problem for students who are not on the anytime meal plan, it does become expensive for those who are.

UMW is severely limiting the dining options of freshman students while forcing them to pay the maximum amount of money for a meal plan. For, the anytime meal plan costs $2,495 per semester, which is roughly $500 more than the second most expensive meal plan.

Many returning students are upset with the changes that have been made to the food options across campus, as are the incoming freshman. The University has talked about the changes last semester as if students would be gaining from them, but in reality more options have been removed rather than added.

Joe Stack’s was a favorite among students in previous years because it offered made-to-order sandwiches and although University Dining said they would be placing Joe Stack’s in the

University Center, they neglected to mention that it would have an extremely limited selection.The University also removed the WOW Wingery from its location in Woodard Hall, and now offers a few select items from its menu in the dining hall.

Similarly, the Underground, which was a popular spot for late night meals last year, is now only operating from 11 a.m. to 2p.m. on weekdays.

This semester, students seem to be having a difficult time finding this on campus to eat because the only eatery with made-to-order options is Qdoba, the most expensive option for students using their meal plans.

In the eyes of the students, there was no need for all of these changes in dining options.

As a student body we feel as if we are not being included in the decisions made by University Dining. Not only has it made the students of UMW frustrated with the school, but also has us questioning whether we can trust our school to choose the best options for us.