Letters to the Editor: Food services should be more accommodating for students

posted in: Opinion | 0

Visiting Pacific University as a junior in high school, I was sold on the homey campus, small classes and abundant population of Hawaii students.

Upon arriving on campus, to my surprise I was thrown into a smelly, cramped freshmen dorm and the food service flat out sucked.

Estimated costs reach a grand total of $51,033.

While I knew the financial commitment I was making when committing, I was also promised easy access to jobs on campus.

I found myself working in The RFOC, now The Grove, our school’s only choice for on campus food, and one of two options for employment for students without work-study.

After a month of employment, I found myself boycotting the food served by Aramark.

To my dissatisfaction, I was offered no lenience in getting out of my meal plan that I refused to use.

I witnessed a lack of sanitation, filthy surfaces, undercooked food, repetition of the food choices, a dangerous kitchen environment, poor employee conditions, failing of audits, undertrained and overworked staff and many unpleased customers.

Unlike other small schools in Oregon, with similar enrollment, we are one of three campuses who are provided services by Aramark.

The same company that serves food to prisons across the nation.

A majority of other universities have contracts with Bon Appétit another, but smaller, on-site food service provider, committed to sustainability and responsible sourcing.

As I understand that we are a school founded on tradition, our long history with Aramark needs to end.

It’s time to make a change to impress and make the student body happy.

Should costs be an issue? School’s with service by Bon Appétit, have meal plans that are in fact, cheaper than what are currently offered.

The meal plans offered also have different prices depending on size. This will give students a choice.

Currently, no matter the meal plan you choose, there is no deviation in price.

We are a small university, and this change to a smaller food service company, will not only help sell to prospective students, but keep the students that are currently here happy.

Campus dining remains the most widely discussed issue on campus. Pacific University is on a road of change. With a new dorm, the refurbish of the UC, increases in enrollment, the hiring of new professors and the revamps of the science buildings to come, signing a contract with a new food provider will keep us on a road to thriving change.


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