As Badgers flood back onto campus after winter break the dining halls have also felt the surge. And while they’re all enjoying the cups of gooey mac n’ cheese again, no one has forgotten the past semester’s outrage over the University’s new meal plan proposal.
The plan proposed by the UW Housing Department would require any UW student residing in the dorms to purchase a meal plan. The plans are offered in tiers, with the lowest option being $1400 for the academic year.
Many students expressed their concerns for the plans, bringing up affordability, religious beliefs, and dietary restrictions. The university has had little response and has made no substantial changes to the plan in response to the collective outrage, and all points that were made were kindly told to go f*** themselves.
So, what’s happening now? A recent article put out by The Daily Cardinal uncovered that UW’s new dining plan would actually rank as the cheapest option out of the Big Ten Schools. Oh, what a relief — if everyone else is forcing students to pay money for food they might not need, it’s totally cool then.
Lily Thomas, a junior at UW, spoke to us about her original concerns with the meal plan. “My expenses are nearly entirely covered through aid at UW because I come from a low-income family, but I still had to get two jobs, donate plasma twice a week, and take out another loan to pay for my housing bill. If I was a freshman when they tried tacking on $1400 I would have had to sell all my belongings or maybe skip out on textbooks that year,” Thomas told us with a grim look on her face.
“But today, I read that we actually have to pay significantly less than our fellow conference schools. So some students have to get another job on top of being a full-time student? Not a big deal. Knowing some schmuck at Ohio State is getting buried in even more debt at the hands of their multi-billion dollar university puts my mind at ease.”
“I used to be opposed to the plan,” another student told The Black Sheep, “but now I think all Badgers should just be thankful we aren’t the Northwestern Wildcats, okay? We don’t have it as bad as them, and after all, UW is the greatest college on Earth. It’s like if you’re so poor you can’t be forced to pay for food you can’t afford, just get a job!”
David Filmore, a junior in marketing, expressed how his fears for religiously-affiliated students were subsided after reading the article. “UW’s meal plan was pretty limiting to students who choose to eat kosher or halal, but I saw that pretty much every other school in the Big Ten was too. So, eh, I’m cool with it now, so long as we marginalize everyone equally.”
According to the article, Director of Housing, Jeff Novak, said that the new dining plan is, “affordable for the campus community.”
We asked Jill Harris, a sophomore and current member of the campus community if the meal plan was affordable for her, to which she responded, “No.”
Novak has also said that the price of the plan was concluded by the average amount any student spends at the dining halls. We asked Harris if she had ever spent $1400 at the dining halls in her past years at UW. “No, I haven’t. But, I do get why they’d make us all pay it. I can’t afford it, and I wouldn’t spend that much at Gordon’s anyways, but if Brad from the 5th floor is spending that much, then I think we should be treated equally, you know?”
Previously mentioned David Filmore, also had a comment to the prior statement, saying, “My last math class I paid attention in was in middle school, but if I’m correct, if $1400 is the average amount then that means there’s a substantial amount of people spending less than that, right? Whatever. I doubt I’m being scammed,” he finished with a shrug.
It’s expected that Novak will also release a statement next week stating he thinks the United States should cut all funding to Medicaid, stop programs to protect our homeless citizens, and cut disability programs because we don’t have it as bad as the third-world countries.
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