Students hurry to spend remaining dining dollars

UNA senior Jordan Jaggers spends his dining dollars in the GUC food court on campus. Jaggers, like many students, is taking advantage of the deals Sodexo is offering for students to spend the remainder of their dining dollars.

Officials are urging students to spend their remaining dining dollars by May 10 or risk losing those unspent funds, which will be split between the university and Sodexo Dining Services at the end of the semester.

Alan Kinkead, general manager of Sodexo at UNA, said the mandatory $75 dining charge, which was unanimously approved at last year’s June board of trustees meeting, affects students enrolled in 12 or more credit hours who are not signed up for a meal plan.

The $75 declining balance was implemented to help the university push for new campus developments and food service providers, Kinkead said.

“The (remaining dining dollars) will be split between the university and Sodexo, and there won’t be a whole lot left to split,” he said. “This charge is to help support new brands. Everyone wants retail brands, and this provides a base for those brands to come to campus.”

Dining dollars may be used at any Sodexo location, including Pizza Hut, A&W, Simply to Go, Smart Market, SubConnection, Einstein Bros. Bagels, World of Wings, Towers Cafeteria and the Roar Store.

Kinkead said they have added new items to the different on-campus Sodexo locations to entice more students into spending their remaining funds. For example, 12-pack cases of soda and earbuds have appeared in different locations at UNA.

“We want to give students the opportunity to use their money,” he said. “The idea is that they spend it all.”

The new academic and student commons center to break ground within the year will feature food service providers such as Chick-Fil-A and Starbucks. Kinkead said UNA needs to generate more on-campus dining sales before those restaurants appear at the university.

“They are demanding brands and require certain sales to come to college campuses, and we have to prove we can provide those sales,” he said.