ULV dilemma: money vs. ethics
Posted March 23, 2007

With a new chef and some new menu ideas, Davenport may be increasing its popularity among students.

We have seen the changes and we greatly appreciate the move toward a healthier menu and in no way is this editorial a reflection on Davenport itself but is being utilized more as a tool to question administration on pricing of the Davenport meal plans.

As commuters at University of La Verne wander from class to class they must decide, “Do I really want to spend my $7 for lunch at Davenport?” Is it fair for them to pay so much when on-campus students are scoring such a deal with their meal plans?

Most students are under the impression that with their meal plan they are saving money or at least getting a fair deal but in reality it is quite the opposite.

With rising gas prices and minimum wage, it is an ongoing battle between budgeting and spending for students, but something students shouldn’t have to worry about is being ripped off by the University.

Take the 12-meal plan: if a student had 12 meals a week and each meal was $7 for 16 weeks (that’s one semester) that would only amount to less than $1,500 per semester.

To be on the pre-paid 12-meal plan, students pay more $2,000 per semester. This means that you would actually save significantly if you just walked into Davenport at every meal every day and paid cash instead of buying the meal plan.

Too bad on-campus students are forced to buy a meal plan. They have no choice in the matter: $4,000 a year on a meal plan which most students do not even utilize fully.

If you think about it $4,000 sounds like it can buy a ton of Cup Noodles and enough energy drinks to last well over a nine month period, so why are we pumping our money into the University general fund when our hard-earned cash can go to good use elsewhere?

As a private university the students at La Verne pay good money for tuition. When you add the on campus room and board fees we are paying close to the same amount as Ivy League schools.

No matter how much we love ULV, we all know that it is no Harvard, Stanford or Yale.

So can’t the on-campus students catch a break when it comes to their food? Those who just walk in off the street should pay more for eating at Davenport than on-campus students.

We at the Campus Times believe that on campus students should get a price break. It only seems fair.

Can we afford to pay $2000 a semester on the formerly unhealthy meals at Davenport?

But more importantly: if we weren’t paying for the privilege to eat at Davenport, would we really eat $2000 worth of food in the semester? Probably not.

At Cal Poly, where dinner is $9.35 for walk-ins off the street, students on-campus students pay $3,687 for the whole school year – that’s still less than a ULV student will pay to get a year’s worth of food.

Seems like they at least have the right idea.

Where is all that extra money going? Maybe if our facilities were amazing it would be easier to deal with the fact that we, as students, are being ripped off.

Something needs to change, there have to be other options available to students who don’t want to throw $4,000 to the unknown.

Maybe it is time for administration to take one of the ethics classes that the University offers.

And maybe Sodexho should join them.

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