EDITORIAL: Voice concerns over Aramark
Improve campus food options
Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Updated: Monday, April 23, 2012 23:04
According to an email to the student body from Student Union President Herbie Rosen ’12 and Senior Vice President of Administration Mark Collins, the University will be conducting a comprehensive review of Dining Services prompted by feedback from students regarding Aramark, the University’s food service provider. This board is glad the University is critically reevaluating our relationship with Aramark. We hope by weighing the benefits and detriments of this partnership, the administration will address students’ concerns by taking this opportunity to reconsider the quality of the food and the meal plan options.
In the past few years, dining has been a continued source of frustration for students—in particular, the quality of the food has drawn complaints. While we appreciate the variety of food Aramark provides, some students are still dissatisfied with the options available in the dining halls. Using the freshest produce and pushing for more creative dishes will work toward improving the quality of the food. In order to make the University more attractive to prospective students as well as current students, the administration should be trying to put its best foot forward with the quality of our dining services.
Moreover, considering the amount Aramark charges for our meal plans, the company can improve meal plan options to better accommodate students. To help students fully utilize their meal plans, Aramark can expand the options that can be bought on a meal, such as microwavable products and bottled soda drinks.
In an interview with the Justice, Mr. Collins stated that while the University has been working with Aramark since 1998, “It’s time to just take a fresh look at dining, and get to the concerns that are voiced periodically from students, from faculty [and] from staff.” Certainly, the University and Aramark have worked together in the past to respond to student feedback to Dining Services. The decision to introduce the 5 Meal Combo Plan two years ago was made only after Aramark met with student groups and tried to understand how they could best meet students’ dining needs. We hope the administration will show the same consideration to students during this review and the results from these discussions address their concerns.
Mr. Rosen and Mr. Collins indicated in their email to students that the dining review will follow a similar format and on May 1 and 2 the administration and Aramark will speak to focus groups to elicit their concerns and opinions. We encourage students to voice their opinions about Aramark. We also hope the University will continue to actively listen to students’ concerns during this process and keep their interests in mind while seriously considering the future of our relationship with Aramark.