Editorial: Sodexo Finally Steps Up Its Game

By The Editorial Board

Over one year has passed since the Princeton Review proclaimed that Fordham had the worst campus food in the nation. Since earning that dubious distinction, the University terminated its contract with Sodexo and opened up a bidding war for Fordham’s food service. After months of deliberations, however, administrators announced in early June that Sodexo will be occupying campus kitchens for another 10 years.

As expected, Fordham students reacted poorly to the news. (One former student commented “BOO! HISS!” on The Ram’s Facebook post breaking the news.) While we at The Fordham Ram certainly understand past frustrations with campus dining options, we also acknowledge that credit must be given where credit is due.

Just a couple of weeks into the semester, we are incredibly impressed with Fordham’s response to what has long been students’ most recurrent grievance. The new and improved dining venues, as well as the expansive meal plan options, are a dramatic improvement over former options.

Così, along with ZeBi (located in Faculty Memorial Hall),  addresses the former dearth of healthy options that existed at Rose Hill.  Così does not, however, preserve the quiet study space that made Empire Cafe so popular. The additions of Auntie Anne’s pretzels below Queen’s Court and Panda Express in Dagger John’s also add more variation to Fordham’s food options.

The meal plans themselves have changed as well, adapting to collegiate lifestyles. Meal swipes, which could formerly be used only at the Marketplace, have been replaced by “meal exchanges,” which can now be used at the Marketplace,  Così, ZeBi, SubConnection and The Grille. In other words, you no longer have to use precious declining balance dollars (DCB) for a buffalo chicken wrap at The Grille. These exchanges give students the flexibility to mix up their meal options at locations all around campus, shattering the mealtime monotony that has defined Fordham in past years.

Extended hours at the Marketplace also present a major improvement. The cafeteria is now open until 10 p.m. on weeknights, one full hour later than in the past and a much more realistic closing time for a college campus eatery. The cafeteria also offers increased seating space, putting a slight dent in 6:00 rush to seize a table in the elbow-to-elbow crowded space. While this represents an improvement, we at The Fordham Ram still see either the expansion of the dining room or the construction of an additional cafeteria as a necessity. It is still nearly impossible to find a seat during peak hours in the cafeteria.

There are clearly many reasons to be optimistic about Fordham’s food future. Before writing off Sodexo as a lost cause, look around at the changes made this year. We think you will like what you taste.


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