Newman Students are forced to waste money on meal plans

By: Reiley Bartel, Onlne Editor

I have an opinion I feel needs to be shared, and I know that I am not the only one who feels this way. Newman is wasting students' money on meal plans.

Although Great Western Dining probably has a good reason for making freshmen sign up for the 19 meal plan, it forces students to waste their money. Personally, I almost never eat breakfast at the dining hall. All I need in the morning is coffee, and I’m sure other students would agree. This meal plan also does not “allow” for students to eat out without missing a meal that they are paying for. I don’t know about you, but I like to go out with friends or family every once and a while. This plan also does not take into account when students are gone for sports, traveling, or when we just plain don’t feel like eating anything but the cereal we have in our dorm rooms.

Sometimes, I just feel like staying in, ordering Chinese food, and binge watching “Gilmore Girls.” But I would be wasting money if I were to do this or skip any other meal for that matter. Sometimes I just need a night of Lorelai’s quick-witted attitude, Luke’s sarcasm, Rory’s boy drama, and wondering if Lorali and Luke will ever get together, even though I’ve seen the show all the way through at least three times and already know the answer to that.

I know that I am not the only student on campus with this dilemma. Some people just don’t eat at the caf because they don’t like it. For others, it doesn’t fit into their schedule to eat when it is open.

The freshmen are not the only ones who are having problems with this meal plan, either. I know several upperclassmen living in Beata who also complain about the meal plan they have to be on because they can make more meals at home, even without an oven.

Now for my proposed solution: I feel like students, if they do not use all of the money they put into the meal plan, should be able to put that money towards their tuition. I know that it is not a real waste of money because it goes to Great Western Dining, but it feels like a waste to us students. If not this option, then how about more flexibility on the meal plans? It doesn’t feel fair, and it is a lot of money, on top of already expensive tuition, room and board,\ and other fees. College isn’t cheap. Shouldn’t Newman make it easier for the students?

As a whole, I feel like Newman could be smarter with students' money. A lot of us work really hard for it and want a good education. We also don’t want to be stuck with student debt years after we graduate. Personally, I’m getting a degree for a job that doesn’t pay a lot in cash, but it’s rewarding nonetheless.

There are other fees on campus that I feel could be used better to benefit all parties involved, but that is a story for another time.

PHOTO: Curtesy Photo, Unslpash