By Catherine Brown –
There’s a lot to be said about the improvements that U of L could make to facilitate learning and an improved student life. Here are a few changes that the university should make to better student and employee experiences.
1. Roll dining credits over
One of the most frustrating aspects of the university is the policies it implements that wastes students’ money. In particular, its policy of expiring meal swipes at the end of each semester and flex points after spring finals.
With meal plans ranging from $300 to nearly $2200 per semester, meal plans are an expense on which students ultimately lose money.
Meal swipes are frustrating because of the limited number of food options classified as such. On average, meal swipes equal $10 worth of food. However, some meal swipe options at restaurants like Einstein Bros. Bagel aren’t worth anywhere near that amount. Meal swipes are a waste of money.
And for students who choose or need to stay on campus during the summer, flex points are necessary. Despite a limited selection of restaurants open, students should be able to use all of the credits for which they paid.
With the university’s $1 billion budget for the 2021-22 academic year, U of L can afford to roll meal swipes over from the fall to the spring semester and roll flex points from spring to summer.
2. Diversify dining options
The university needs to expand dining options. If U of L cared about student health and satisfaction, then U of L Dining would offer a better array of dining locations.
Overall, dining options are largely unhealthy. Many of the on-campus dining options offer fried, fatty and greasy foods. Only a few restaurants on campus offer relatively nutritious foods, like Subway, Ever Grains, and occasionally, The Ville Grill.
With McAlister’s leaving campus, students deserve better. Many students are calling for McAlister’s replacement to have a similar atmosphere, like Panera Bread.
What students need is a new dining option that fits their budget and delivers fresh, nutritious food.
3. Eradicate the on-campus housing policy
It came as a shock last year when the university announced that second-year students would be required to live in campus housing. Students who had already made alternative plans had to cancel. First-years had to anticipate another year of poor dorm conditions. Commuter students had to figure out what this requirement meant for them.
With the university’s large budget, U of L can afford to let students reside either on or off campus. Not living on campus doesn’t mean that students won’t still provide valuable revenue that U of L needs.
The university can still make money charging students for a dining plan. However, students should have free rein over which dining plan fits their lifestyle.
U of L should ultimately let students — particularly first- and second-year students — choose whether they reside in on-campus/affiliated housing.
What changes do you want to see U of L bring?
Photo Courtesy // University of Louisville Campus Housing