Dickson Recommneds Retaining Status QuoBy Brian Rosenberg
Editor in Chief
In a memorandum to Lawrence E. Maguire, director of housing and food services, Senior Vice President William R. Dickson '56 recommended that the Institute retain the current dormitory dining system.
The decision comes after the House Dining Committee considered several proposals to reform the system, each of which met with strong disapproval from students. In response to these criticisms, the committee grudgingly endorsed the current system.
Baker Housemaster William B. Watson, chair of the committee, thought Dickson's recommendation was appropriate. "It's prudent. There are a lot of issues that have to be looked at, and MIT needs more time to look at them fairly and accurately," he said.
Watson said the House Dining Committee will submit a report to the administration at the end of next week addressing "some of issues as we see them." After that report has been submitted, "it's up to the administration to ... make any final determination," he added.
Dickson's memo recommends that the Institute "come to a conclusion by late next fall."
The House Dining Committee was created to solve the problem posed by the dining halls in Baker House, MacGregor House, McCormick Hall, and Next House, which have lost between $500,000 and $750,000 for each of the last five years. MIT hoped to place these facilities under the profit-and-loss system, in which ARA keeps any profit and is also responsible for any losses suffered.
"As chair of the committee, I feel somewhat defeated that we couldn't find a solution to resolve the economic problems of the dining halls, but we have good information and the administration is in a better position to make a decision than when the committee started. You hope to find a solution, but maybe if you find the problem, someone else will find the solution," Watson said.