Dining policy is unfair for busy students

To the Editor of Lumen,

For some students, almost every waking moment is dedicated to col­lege. Commonly, some of the basic needs like sleeping, showering and most of all eating, are put on the back burner.

With limited time in students’ busy schedules, time to eat on cam­pus is inevitably restricted. When students do not have enough time to stop by the cafeteria or Crossroads and grab a sandwich to eat later, they might end up having to skip a meal altogether; a meal that was likely paid for through a meal plan.

Due to new changes in campus dinning policy, consumers of cafete­ria food are unable to take a quick sandwich or warm entrée out of the dining space. Students are only per­mitted to take one piece of fruit or a sugary dessert out during lunch or dinner. This serves as a problem to those students who are unable to sit down to dine in the cafeteria or go to Crossroads due to their busy schedules.

I find this new policy distasteful and incapable of meeting the needs of those students, where cafeteria hours are their only moments to grab a quick meal.

I recently witnessed a student who was in a crunch for time grab a sandwich, wrap it up in a napkin and put it in her backpack “to go.” A lunch server apparently watched this individual put the sandwich away for safe keeping, approached the student, and forcibly opened her backpack without permission. She removed the sandwhich and asked, “What else do you have in there?” In front of a table full of other students, the server continued to dig through the student’s belongings looking for other food items, and asked that the napkin-wrapped sandwich be thrown away.

What does this say to students? Does this mean that we are con­stantly being watched to see if we are stealing food that we paid for? I understand that there have been problems with students taking a surplus of food out of the dining areas for consumption, and I agree that is wrong. But, what about the students who aren’t able to sit down to eat lunch, either in the cafeteria or Crossroads, and just need some­thing to eat on-the-go?

The act that I witnessed was hu­miliating and extremely unprofes­sional. It doesn’t add up. Students can sit down with a full plate of food and throw it away, and that’s okay. But, if I make something for myself that I will eat, just not in the cafete­ria, that’s not okay? I feel this sets a grave tone for students, who already have concerns about meal plan pric­es, food choices, and dining hours. I think that some of these concerns should be seriously addressed in or­der to serve not only those who are busy, but all Viterbo students.

-Derek Freese

Senior BFA major from Sauk Rapids, Minn.

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