All Hail: Shorter walk, better meal

It’s a Wednesday evening and my lack of concentration means one thing: it’s time to eat. While logic says that eating when you’re hungry is the most reasonable thing to do, it is far from convenient at Northeastern.

I’ve been to several colleges where there are dining halls spread across the campus. Some even have a dining hall just for upperclassmen. This is not the case at Northeastern, where the only dining halls are located close to the freshmen residence halls.

If you’re daring enough to venture to either of the Stetsons around the normal mealtime, there is a line at basically every food station. It’s hard enough to simply get food. It’s even harder to find a seat.

So here’s an alternative: go to Outtakes. I personally love that Outtakes is available at Northeastern. But even at Outtakes, the lines are ridiculously long and the chances of getting a basket at 6 p.m. on a Friday evening are slim to none.

Having the only two dining halls and Outtakes within feet of each other creates a huge disadvantage for students with limited time between classes to grab a bite to eat. With the time it takes to get to the dining halls from the general classroom areas, getting through the lines of people wanting to get food at the same time and searching for a seat is more than a simple venture.

I could imagine this would be an even greater disadvantage to an upperclassman. Since most don’t live near the Stetsons, going to get dinner is more than a simple stroll. If one cuts down on the meal plan, as many upperclassmen do because of inconvenient costs and distance to the dining halls, he or she loses the dining dollars that supply the groceries to replace the meals.

Being forced to have ten meals a week, I personally find myself wasting time trying to spend every dollar of my meal plan. And why wouldn’t I? I’m paying a huge amount of money each semester for each meal. However, it is nearly impossible for me to eat two times a day in the dining hall with my class schedule and workload. Therefore, I’m left, along with many members of the Northeastern student body, to go to Outtakes three times on Friday and collect the last scraps of food that are left behind.

Is this really necessary? I find that there is a simple solution: create a new dining hall on the other side of campus, where it is much more convenient to drop by between classes and to give upperclassmen an “upper hand” when it comes to utilizing and enjoying their meal plans.

By adding another dining hall on the other side of campus, students would be able to get food when it is convenient for them, and attend class alert and with a full stomach. Students would also be able to reap the benefits of having another great dining hall to choose from, one that might be closer to their residence halls. Finally, students would be able to make the most of their meal plans, keeping them on campus more often, therefore maintaining a well-nourished community.

Northeastern is expanding and growing into an incredible university. Along with the success of West Village, it’s about time they also conform to the necessities of their now larger campus. By making one simple addition to the campus, Northeastern can create a much more convenient and desired community.

Until then, I will eat at 3 p.m. on days that I am adventurous enough to get lunch, and I will continue to use the five meals I have leftover to stock up on food from Outtakes on Fridays.

– Rani Pimentel is a freshman business major.

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