paul meissner

The days of the Campus Dining meal plans are going the way of the Lighthouse. By 2008, meal plans will be phased out and Plu$ Dollars will take their place.

Alan Cushman, the associate director for Campus Dining, said that the Plu$ Dollar-only plan will give students more freedom to choose what they eat while “planning their chaos” in the beginning of the year.

Campus Dining, run by the Cal Poly Foundation, now offers three meal plans. Each plan currently features a combination of full meals and Plu$ Dollars. They vary between five, eight and 10 meals per week with Plu$ Dollar ranges of 687 to 232 per quarter.

“We serve three markets,” Cushman said. “The primary market is students who live on campus. Off-campus students are secondary, and staff being last, so (Campus Dining) has to accommodate all three.”

Cushman added that while many students on campus will eat their meals at Campus Dining facilities, “there needs to be options for people to grab snacks.”

Interest in a Plu$ Dollar-only meal plan has grown since its introduction in 1992, Cushman said.

“Some students don’t use their meals at all, and it all goes to waste,” said Nick Chronis, a customer service assistant at Campus Market. “It’s just wasted money if (students) aren’t using the right plan.”

Other students still prefer the plans with more meals, said agriculture business senior Abiah Shaffer. “I knew some football players who liked the meals because it was all you can eat.”

However, Megan Yoder, a communication studies senior, did not use most of her meals. “The food was just so nasty at Lighthouse that I ended up buying food at Campus Market,” she said. “I had a lot of wasted meals . . . If I ever ate at Lighthouse, it was more of a social meal with friends. I would have liked to have the extra Plu$ Dollars instead.”

Cushman said that Cal Poly’s move to Plu$ Dollars correlates with a national trend of universities using discretionary dollars instead of fixed meal programs.

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