How are students feeling with the changes in campus food options this year?

Photo courtesy of Taylor Roberts.

TAYLOR ROBERTS | OPINION COLUMNIST | tmrober1@butler.edu

The everyday iconic college student struggle to satisfy appetites, brought on by stress and all-nighters, is very much alive. However, this year, students have an additional concern. With the remodeling of C-Club into the new Plum Market  — and a change in campus catering — food options on campus have, for many students, become limited.

For Kendal Sagear, a first-year biology major, one of the accomplishments of Bon Appetit’s new services are the different types of food offered in the dining hall. However, despite the variety offered, these options have grown to be quite repetitive.

“I think Butler has a good variety of food,” Sagear said. “They always have an Asian bar, an American bar, and then sometimes they have a taco bar or a pasta bar where you can choose what you want. It is kind of repetitive though since every week they have the same kind of food, so there isn’t much variety in that sense.”

The source of this problem seems to stem from the temporary closure of what used to be C-Club, which forces students to eat meals at Atherton Marketplace and ResCo. On top of this, there is also the limitation of operating hours. If a student were to have classes during the time designated for Atherton, then they would basically be out of luck until dinner.

Another issue discussed revolves around flex dollars. With Plum Market not being open, there are fewer places for students to spend their flex dollars. This has become a concern for many students considering their unspent flex dollars do not roll over into the next semester.

Madison Zetzl, a first-year pre-pharmacy major, feels as though the flex dollars have just become a waste of money.

“Right now there isn’t anywhere to really spend [flex dollars] because Plum Market is closed and I personally don’t drink coffee so I’m not going to go to Starbucks,” Zetzl said. “The Lacy building has food I would never eat and I’m not going to walk all the way to the HRC just to go to a Grab and Go. So there really isn’t anywhere for me to spend my flex dollars.”

Even upperclassmen have noticed these problems in the campus food options. For Maxwell Tucker, a senior marketing and entrepreneurship and innovation major, there is a clear difference in the food quality on campus this year. Tucker was one of the few seniors to stay on the meal plan for his last year due to the desire to try out the new provider.

While Tucker feels as though the quality of Atherton’s food has improved this year, there is a lack of the convenience which C-Club always provided and is essential to any busy college student.

“There aren’t really any grab-and-go places anymore,” Tucker said. “It’s just inconvenient and causes you to have to leave campus more.”

In the end, it is clear that campus food options have been cut down for this year, and it is a problem. Due to this new limitation, students have been forced to seek other means of getting food — which usually means going off campus.

However, this solution is not satisfactory.

With the amount of money students pay to be on the campus meal plan, having to go off campus just doesn’t seem like a fair solution. This solution is made even less satisfying when considering the growing problems with flex dollars which come with campus meal plans. It can also be said that this isn’t even a viable solution for many underclassmen who don’t have access to vehicles to travel off campus.

Hopefully, with the opening of Plum Market in November, this problem can be alleviated. Until then, the ramen diet and vending machine dorm snacks just may be our best friends.

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