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New meal plan and food choices stir controversy on campus

By Erin Shriver
On September 23, 2014

Surprise, surprise! Ottawa has created controversy yet again, but this time is it with something very important to every student’s well being. The food. 

This fall, the new Gibson Student Center is open for business. With a modern facility and added seating, it looks great from the inside and out, but the problem student’s are currently having is with some of the options. 

First off, the meal plans changed…not only in price, but also in quantity of food received with each swipe. There are still only four meal plan options:

Bronze Dining Club Membership: 100 swipes per semester with $100 Dining Dollars at $1,550/year.
Silver Dining Club Membership: 14 swipes per week with $200 Dining Dollars at $4,150/year.
Gold Dining Club Membership: 22 swipes per week with $300 Dining Dollars at $4,404/year.
Platinum Dining Club Membership: 28 swipes per week with $400 Dining Dollars at $4,672/year. 

Also, if you’re not 21 in Patty Hall, you are required to get a Bronze Dining Club Membership…these students are living in apartments and can cook for themselves, so why should they be forced to get a meal plan? 

Not only that, but first year students are required to purchase either the Platinum or Gold Dining Club Membership, and the Bronze Dining Club Membership is only available to students who live off-campus or live in on-campus apartments. 

For every swipe, you get one serving of food. If you would like something different for your second serving, you have to swipe yet again. But don’t worry…ice cream is free. 

This means, if someone is used to eating two serving per meal, and they only have the 22 swipes per week, they can potentially use 8 swipes in just ONE day. They can eat to their satisfaction for under three days. After that, they are forced to use their Dining Dollars to buy meals. 

This is different from years past because students were allowed to go up for unlimited servings every time they were in the cafeteria, free of charge. Not to mention, you did not have to pay extra for cereal at every meal. 

The positive side of this “swipe per meal” is that you are allowed to finally sit in the cafeteria without swiping. You can come in and sit with friends while they’re eating, do homework in between classes, or just hang out in the evening.

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