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Take-out needs to become an option for students on-the-go

Has this ever happened to you? You have fifteen minutes in between classes, and you're starving. So you swipe into the dining hall using your meal plan and quickly put together a sandwich. As you go to leave the dining hall, you're told that you can't leave with it. You have to go sit down and eat it there. So much for convenience.

For residents, a meal plan is mandatory. The cost per semester can range from $1500 to $2200. Even with the cheapest meal plan, most students, including me, barely use half of their designated swipes.

Because of classes and activities, there are days when I've had to use the few Pirate Bucks I have left or go without eating an actual meal.

If I'm paying over $3000 a year for a meal plan, shouldn't I be able to eat my sandwich on my way to class rather than having to wait in a long line at Leafs & Grains or resort to eating junk food from a vending machine?

Even if I was to eat my sandwich in the dining hall, there are other people around me eating two or three times the amount of food as me.

Yes, I can see the possibility that people are bringing food to other people who aren't paying for a meal plan or that they are just taking extra food after already eating their meal. But how is that different than just eating it inside of the dining hall?

Compared to the people who go back for third and fourth helpings of whatever GDS is serving, why can't I take my first helping outside of the confinement of the dining hall?

Other colleges have a "take-out" option in which they supply containers and monitor what the students take in and out. This helps in cases when you're rushing to class or if your class gets out after the dining hall has already closed.

There are times when I'd rather eat something more substantial than a bag of chips or put out extra money for a turkey sandwich. If I'm paying the exorbitant cost for a meal plan that is required of me, I would at least like the option to use it in a way that fits my schedule.

Kristyn Lyncheski is a junior journalism major from Gladstone, NJ. She can be reached at

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