New changes to meal plan, student opinions

A student stands in front of the Carving Board in Roess Dining Hall as their meal is prepared.

Taylor Ward

A student stands in front of the Carving Board in Roess Dining Hall as their meal is prepared.

Madalyn Edwards, Associate News Editor

Campus Dining updated this year’s new meal plan concerning to-go containers on Sept. 12.

The new meal plan has been a work in progress and as reflected by the recent update, is still going through changes.

At the beginning of the year, students were required to use two swipes if they wanted their food to go. Since then, Campus Dining changed this rule. Now, students only have to use one swipe and pay an additional 50 cents.

According to Campus Dining’s website, students have 10 minutes to fill their container, which must close shut. They can take one drink and one fruit with them. Upon filling their container, students must leave the dining room. 

After taking a to-go box, students will be locked out of their meal plan for 45 minutes.

Campus Dining said they implemented these rules in response to concerns from students. Still, many have opinions regarding the new plan.

 Maxwell Black, a sophomore psychology major, said the swipe system makes it difficult for him to find food meeting his dietary restrictions. 

“The idea of meal swipes on a conceptual level, I’m for. But what they’ve done in practice is that in implementing, they’ve taken out options of things people can eat,” Black said. “For someone like me, that’s really hard, because I can’t eat gluten — I’m allergic.” 

Black compared the changes to last year’s options. 

“What used to be maybe 10 options last year turned into three options, and if you have a dietary restriction, it’s like, one option,” Black said. 

Garrett Marshburn, a sophomore fermentation sciences major, explained how he disapproved of the quality of food. 

“I think the swipe-in system is a good idea … that will help with food insecurity. The problem is that if someone is like me and wants to get something throughout the day that’s a good meal and going to fill you up, having to go to the dining halls to get a small portion that doesn’t taste good doesn’t work out very well,” Marshburn said.

Other students approved of the change.

Polly Lumelsky, a freshman English major, said the new system is reassuring as it prevents students from running out of meals. 

“You’re still able to get at least two meals a day,” Lumelsky said.

Mui Kpuih, a freshman biology major, noted that she wished the meal plan had more food options but thought the hand scanning system was “more convenient.”

This new system, called the WAVE scanner, allows students to scan their hand in place of using their AppCard. Campus Dining claimed they implemented this system to give students quicker access to the dining rooms. Students may register for this service by visiting the Campus Services Express Desk.

The “All You Care To Eat” dining rooms are located in Roess Dining Hall and Trivette Hall. Students can access weekly menus by visiting App State dining’s website.