College students usually dislike their universities’ on-campus dining options. And University of Miami students are no exception: In the past year alone, students have advertised their disgust for Chartwells food via Tweets from the anonymous @UM_Shartwells handle, as well as through a variety of Chartwells-themed meme graphics that have gone viral across social media platforms.
But this spring semester, Dining Services has rolled out a series of changes that are sure to give on-campus dining the kick it needs to feed a happier student body.
Dining Services’ most recent efforts truly cater to the needs of students that are always on the go, as well as persistent about convenience. At the end of the fall semester, the student body welcomed UM’s first food truck, Uragano, whose location can be tracked on Facebook and Twitter. After being introduced to campus two weeks ago, popular Miami food trucks Moty’s Grill and Mangia Mia will be stationed at central locations on campus during the week. For students who are in a hurry or too lazy to walk across campus, these meals on wheels are a quick and easy solution.
In the past month, Dining Services has introduced student- and budget-friendly initiatives to entice customers to eat on campus. Students can now save money on on-campus meals by using frequent diner cards in the food court. By spending more than $3 for breakfast or $5 for lunch, customers can start filling up their diner cards with stamps to receive discounts at the food court and Oasis.
Another money-saving campaign is Dining Services’ #UMDiningDeals posted on the @UMDining Twitter account. Recent deals include a free kid-sized Frosty at Wendy’s or a free size upgrade at Jamba Juice – all you need to do is mention @UMDining’s Tweet at both food court vendors.
The department has also gone digital by posting nutritional facts for food served in dining halls and the food court on dineoncampus.com/miami.
The website, along with Dining Services’ social media accounts, has allowed the department to better advertise its services. Although the dining halls have always offered special dinners featuring worldly cuisines, those efforts have often gone unappreciated. Dining Services is now better able to inform students of such opportunities. For example, check out Austrian specialties in the dining halls on Tuesday, and a “Smokin’ Aces BBQ” complete with pulled pork and coleslaw on April 19.
Overall, on-campus dining has dramatically transformed for the better, and there is always room for improvement.
Editorials represent the majority view of The Miami Hurricane editorial board.