The 2004-05 school year has started, and students are being exposed to new dining options that ARAMARK and UR Dining Services are offering this year in response to students’ requests from last year.

Several changes were made for this year’s dining services on campus. First, Douglass Dining Center is now offering ” la carte” lunch for students. “The Douglass Dining Center returned to la carte due to high student request last year,” ARAMARK resident district manager Brad Bingaman said. “Every year, we monitor our satisfaction levels and make every effort to respond to suggestions and requests.”

“I wish Douglass provided All You Care to Eat during the lunch time again,” sophomore Sukhmit Kalsi said. “It is true that they offer club meals, but it’s usually not enough and Danforth’s lunch does not offer varieties of choices to us.”

This year, Danforth Dining Center is offering All You Care to Eat lunch during weekdays. Club Express, located in the Hive, used to offer sandwiches for lunch, but decided not to offer them this year.

“I really wish that ARAMARK and Dining Services offered sandwiches again at the Hive,” senior Koji Yahagi said. “Now, I always have to go to Douglass to get sandwiches, which sometimes takes a lot of time due to long lines.”

The most significant change at the Pit is the new C3: Convenience to the Third Power store, which carries top sales items available from the Corner Store. “The new convenience store is OK, they have normal stuff that a normal convenience store has,” sophomore Sophia Kim said. “But I wish they [would] lower the prices.”

Also, the Pit is now offering soup noodles for people who want something other than sandwiches, burgers or sushi.

For the meal plans this year, ARAMARK and Dining Services added the 280 Club Meal Plan for students.

Essentially, the purpose of the 280 Plan is for students who wish to eat three “All You Care to Eat” meals per day. “The new 280 Plan was added based on a few requests for a plan that offers more meals,” Bingaman said. “The [positive] responses have been greater than anticipated with those signing for this plan.”

“Over one third of the incoming freshmen on the River Campus and over one half of the Eastman freshmen selected the 280 Plan,” guest service manager David Feist said. “The 280 enrollment is significantly higher than expected.”

“If our 280 Plan freshmen find that their eating choices are not a good match, they may submit a meal plan change request for the 230 Plan at the One Card Customer Service Office in Susan B. Anthony Hall prior to September 20th,” Feist said.

If students have requests, ideas or complaints regarding current dining services, they should contact ARAMARK and Dining Services. “We have made our enhancements based on student feedback,” Bingaman said. “And our goal is to create one of the best dining services in the country.”

Aoyama can be reached at yaoyama@campustimes.org.



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