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Summer food services are inadequate

(The Tech received a copy of this letter addressed to Lawrence E. Maguire, Director of Housing and Food Services.)

ARA has made unacceptable cuts in its services for the summer. For students and other MIT personnel who do not have the time or the facilities to prepare healthy, well-balanced meals for themselves, MIT's on-campus food service is the only moderately-priced alternative.

Specifically, ARA has cut its services for the summer in the following ways: (1) the dinner menu has been reduced to only one hot entree and one vegetable during weekdays at Lobdell dining hall. (2) No hot entrees are served on weekends in Lobdell. (3) Lobdell closes completely on weekdays at 6:30 pm (in previous summers dinner was served until 7 pm). (4) Walker Memorial is closed for dinner. (5) Pritchett is closed for the summer. (6) The lunch menu at Walker has been reduced and the cookie cart eliminated.

We realize that the demand for on-campus food is lower during the summer, but ARA's cuts in dinner service at Lobdell are unreasonable. Although ARA offers grill, sandwiches and pizza during dinner, these options are not sufficiently nutritious to have every evening. Furthermore, these are available at local fast food restaurants, whereas dinner entrees are not.

ARA, as MIT's exclusive food service contractor, has an obligation to provide the basic necessities for students desiring to eat dinner in MIT's cafeterias. We offer the following suggestions to improve this deplorable situation.

O+ ARA should provide 2-3 entrees for every dinner meal with at least two choices of vegetables and a starch item (e.g. potatoes or rice).

O+ The operating hours should include another half hour for dinner (5-7 pm) to better accommodate the schedules of summer students.

O+ Weekend service should include entrees.

We believe these requests are reasonable and fair to the large number of students staying at MIT for the summer. At an institution where research is of the highest quality, it is distressing that MIT's summer food service is so lacking.

ARA has been able to provide an adequate level of service in past summer terms. It is our sincere hope that ARA will listen to these grievances and change its policies accordingly. We look forward to a return to ARA's previous level of service.

Dean Alhorn G->

Vipul Bhushan G->

Michael Corvin G->

Diane Joseph G->

Michael McCarthy G->

David Standley G->