Above: a screenshot of the online petition a group of North Carolina Central University students created to protest the meal plan for freshmen. Some freshmen at N.C. Central University say they are paying for more meals that aren’t available through their meal plan. A petition on Change.org says freshmen pay for 21 meals per week but
Above: a screenshot of the online petition a group of North Carolina Central University students created to protest the meal plan for freshmen.
Some freshmen at N.C. Central University say they are paying for more meals that aren’t available through their meal plan.
A petition on Change.org says freshmen pay for 21 meals per week but only have access to 19 meals.
Ninety-nine people had signed the petition by Tuesday morning, saying they too “have been a victim of this theft.”
A group of students calling themselves “The Roundtable” created the petition. The students, including Jordan Thomas, were discussing how they would be able to afford textbooks this semester when someone brought up the meal-plan issue.
“One of us decided to look at our eBill and see the breakdown of what we were paying for when coming here,” said Thomas, a freshman studying political science. “When we looked at the outrageous price of the meal plan, one of us also wondered why it’s required for freshmen to have this particular meal plan.”
NCCU freshmen must purchase meal plan “Q,” which entitles them to 21 meals per week and $225 Flex Dollars. The plan, which is the most expensive of all available options, costs $1,875.87 per semester.
Some students say W.G. Pearson Cafeteria is only open for 19 meals a week, not 21.
But Eagle Dining Services says freshmen have access to 24 weekly meal periods in the cafeteria: breakfast, lunch, dinner and “late night” from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. On the weekends, brunch and dinner are offered.
The discrepancy stems from the “late night” option, in which the cafeteria serves the same food that was on the dinner menu earlier in the evening.
Thomas calls it the “missing meal factor,” and he says it’s unfair.
“It seems unethical,” he said.
Some other students agree.
“It’s ridiculous to pay for a service I am not getting,” said Janeen Reynolds, a junior biology major. “It’s about time we petition this.”
Thomas said he wants the university to refund the money from unused meal swipes to students.
“If not, then I believe that we (the students and Eagle Dining Services) should negotiate through a town hall meeting and amend current policy and make it better for the classes that come behind 2021,” he said.
Freshman class president Palace Jones said the current meal plan requirement “is wasting our money altogether.”
“The plan should be altered so we can utilize all 21 swipes or save our money and use the dining opportunities that we have now,” Jones said.