By ALEX VAN BEEK
The Student Government Association (SGA) has voted in favor of removing to-go boxes from the WOW Wingery Eagle’s Nest in an effort to move toward a more environmentally friendly option of transporting food.
The motion passed at the SGA Executive Cabinet’s meeting on Monday. The current to-go boxes are said to cause food “to become soggy, messy, or moist,” are “not available on a consistent basis” and “are causing more trash than helping the student body for convenience sake,” according to the motion.
SGA President Stephanie Preston helped clarify some of the wording found in the motion.
“There is no concrete plan attached to this motion on how to go forward,” said Preston. “However, the Ecology Club is currently working with Dining Services and Sodexo to figure out a feasible plan that is sustainable. They have several ideas for a more environmentally friendly to-go box and are working to get a new alternative in place by this coming fall semester or the next spring semester.”
While the SGA, as a whole, is in support of measures that will further sustainability at the University of Mary Washington, Jeremy Thompson, the student representative to the Board of Visitors (BOV), does not approve of the vague wording found in the motion.
“Without there being a plan, I could not support the motion,” said Thompson. “There is a better option for students out there.”
The executive cabinet decided the issue in a vote where four student representatives supported the removal, two did not support the removal and three representatives abstained, according to the SGA meeting minutes from April 8, 2013.
It is not normal for that many representatives to abstain from voting, according to Thompson.
“It rarely happens,” said Thompson.
Preston, however, disagreed.
“It is common for a motion to pass with a few votes,” said Preston. “There are nine members of the Cabinet who vote on motions, which itself is a small number. When a motion with very defined opposing sides is presented to the Executive Cabinet the room ends up split.”
Sophomore business major Ford Torney believes the SGA’s decision could inconvenience students.
“Like many students here, I am very active in campus activities and classes,” said Torney. “When I go from class to rehearsal for Theatre, I may only have ten minutes. It is much easier for me to grab to-go items or get my food to-go so I can run to DuPont, get ready for the show, and then eat when I am able.”
This most recent effort to get rid of to-go boxes follows a previous decision where UMW dining services stopped offering the to-go boxes because they were deemed unsustainable. However, dining services later brought back the to-go boxes because students thought they were not properly consulted on this decision, according to Preston.
“We will be working with dining services to then tell them about this new student concern regarding the to-go boxes that were put in place recently,” said Preston. “They will be the ones that make the final call on this issue.”