Next Dining Hall Will Remain OpenBy Karen Kaplan
The Office of Housing and Food Services is expected to approve yet another plan for operating MIT's beleaguered dormitory dining halls today, and in a significant departure from the most recent proposal, the cafeteria in Next House will remain open.
Few specifics were available last night, pending the formal approval that is expected to come today. However, both the president and house manager of Next House said they have received indications that their dining hall will remain open for at least another year.
Next House President Walter E. Babiec '94 said he had "been in contact with" Lawrence E. Maguire, director of housing and food services, and was told on Wednesday that "no matter what, the dining hall's going to be kept open." He also said that a "totally voluntary meal plan," which does not require residents to purchase a minimum, would be maintained.
"I don't have anything official, but I understand it's going to be open," said George E. Hosker, the Next House manager.
Maguire declined to provide any details of the new proposal before it is approved by Senior Vice President William R. Dickson. "A decision has not been made or announced by my boss," he said last night.
Still, a chalkboard message in Next House yesterday said, "Next House dining hall will be open next year," and thanked residents for providing their input in the decision-making process.
"I'm pleased with the decision, but Next House will lose money and they will end up closing it next year," Babiec said. "Is the goal of the house dining system make money or to make sure that students are fed and healthy?"
"I'm relieved," said Charlie C. Pan '95, a Next House resident. "I don't want to pay umpteen amounts of money to keep (the dining hall) open and I don't want to trek down to Networks to eat."