By DEANNA BIONDI
Mary Washington students should not have to deposit $10 onto their EagleOne card just to do a single load of laundry. Many students often split their loads of laundry between on-campus and home in order to save money. However, students also find themselves in the position of having to deposit money onto their EagleOne accounts in the last few weeks of the year to do laundry, when they may not have time to go home for the weekend. As a result, students end the year with money remaining on their EagleOne accounts because they had to deposit $10, which is more than they need for one load of laundry.
Students can use the remaining balance elsewhere, such as vending machines and restaurants on or near campus, but oftentimes this leads to unnecessary spending that only occurs because the student has remaining EagleOne money that they feel that need to use up. The EagleOne page of the university website does state that “refunds will be given upon written request only if a student graduates, transfers or withdrawals,” so the money leftover in the accounts of graduating students is not simply lost as long as they request a refund. Even students who are not graduating or transferring, however, feel that they need to use up their EagleOne money before the year is over so that the balance doesn’t sit in the account, useless, for months.
The most commonly used service that EagleOne is used for is laundry, and students cannot always afford to deposit $10 onto their EagleOne from their personal bank account at one time. Especially when the only thing they’re using it for is laundry. When students only need to do one load of laundry, it is unreasonable to assume that everyone has access to 14 quarters – the amount it takes to do one load of laundry – at one time, so the only money that students have access to to do their laundry is their EagleOne money.
Laundry costs $1.75 per use of any machine. This comes out to $3.50 for a single load of laundry, or $7.00 for two loads, especially given the size of the washing machines. Signs in every laundry room on campus instruct us to only put one-washing-machine-worth of clothes into a dryer at one time, because anything more causes excessive strain on the dryers and causes them to overheat. Students, however, often use two washing-machines at one time, and then put both loads into one dryer, regardless of what the signs say, so that they only need to use three machines instead of four. The price of this method is the difference between $5.25 and $7.
Students should be allowed to have the option of using a combination of quarters and EagleOne money for laundry. Right now, even if students have, for example, $3 of EagleOne and two quarters, they still cannot do a single load of laundry even though they can technically afford the cost. With the ten-dollar minimum EagleOne deposit put in place by the University, a $7 load of laundry leaves only $3 of EagleOne remaining, which is not enough for another single load of laundry. This is when unnecessary spending begins to take place, because students feel the need to use up their EagleOne balance before it goes to waste, or they figure they may as well use it because they have nothing else to use it for.
As students continue to run their laundry through the dryer twice (and spend almost the entirety of their EagleOne funds), the University needs to reevaluate the minimum deposit for EagleOne accounts. Many students cannot afford to deposit $10 at one time and struggle to use the remaining sum, so the minimum deposit should be lowered to at least $5.