Cedar Crest College newspaper since 1923
By Jericho Burke
When I returned to Cedar Crest this fall, I noticed something different in the Falcon’s Nest. An unpleasant change had taken place: bottled beverages in the Falcon’s Nest can no longer be included with a meal swipe. This is a bad change of policy and here’s why.
Less variety with meals
Currently, students can only get bottled water, two small cartons of milk, a 16 oz. fountain drink, or hot beverages with their meal swipe. This severely limits our options. Partaking of the same drinks over and over again for an entire semester is enough to make anyone’s taste buds go on strike.
Furthermore, some medical conditions may limit their options even further. Diabetics may avoid the soda fountain. People with allergies or dietary restrictions may not be able to drink milk. (Not to mention, the cardboard cartons make the milk taste off.)
Less value for money
All students want to get their money’s worth out of a meal card swipe, and with the new restrictions, I don’t feel we can do that. The current drinks are limited in scope and frankly, kind of boring.
So many types of drinks—iced coffee, juices, sodas, and energy drinks—sit waiting behind the glass doors for someone to partake of their sugary goodness, but are unavailable to all but those with the money to spend. Because, as we all know, every college student walks around with extra cash on hand.
Furthermore, drinks can be really expensive on their own. Some cost over 4 dollars, enough for a meal in its own right. It’s true that all residents get 50 flex dollars automatically at the beginning of the semester, but with high drink prices that money will be siphoned away quickly. I personally like having flex money for emergencies, like when I really need ice cream.
And that’s to say nothing of the poor part-time or commuter students, who don’t get free flex dollars added to their card. What are they to do when day after day of fruit punch or 2% milk leaves them craving something more?
The fact is that currently, meal plan users don’t have enough drink options and the other drinks can be ridiculously expensive. Dining Services should seriously consider amending their current stance and return to the old system of any one drink per meal swipe.