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More Donuts Please

The Dunkin’ Donuts near my home in Plano, Texas is open 24 hours a day. My good friend tells me that his Dunkin’ in New Jersey is open until 4 a.m. every night. Now, how late is Dunkin’ open at MIT, a school with one of the most nocturnal demographics on the planet? Last time I checked, we couldn’t get donuts after 10 p.m.! The folks in Jersey or suburban Texas are definitely not flocking to Dunkin’ in the wee hours of the morning. So, why are tireless MIT students who find themselves tooling late into the night on campus left with little more than stale LaVerde’s coffee and cases of Red Bull to tie them over until morning? Don’t they deserve donuts, too? I say, legitimize our Dunkin’ Donuts — upgrade us to full time service! Heck, it might even be profitable.

This is not to deny that the addition of our very own Dunkin’ last fall has been a boost to our otherwise lackluster Student Center food selection. (Does anyone else find themselves alternating between Anna’s and Chicken Teriyaki every day?) Yes, the SC has experienced a pleasing expansion of options since freshman year. However, I just don’t feel like I can get excited about any of the choices anymore. Usually, I just stand over by one of the couches for a few minutes, contemplating how many pounds of Anna’s sour cream I have ingested since the term began. Then, I go get teriyaki (or rarely, a sub or a cheeseburger).

I can only salivate thinking about the coming addition of our very own Subway. It will be a good start, but much more effort will have to be put into finding a successful mix of options. One suggestion — try recruiting vendors with well-established, positive brand names. Who wouldn’t love the addition of a Wendy’s (no McDonald’s, please) to Lobdell? Or, for that matter, why not build out a Starbucks in the Coffee House? Of course, if I had to sum up my suggestions for the Coffee House, it would be to get any source of quality 24-hour coffee flowing through some vendor, even if it’s the hippie-style 1369 Coffee House of Central Square fame. Also, eliminate the buzzing air vents, play some jazz, and reestablish the atmosphere that made the Coffee House a cool place for study or meetings in the first place.

The bottom line is that our student center leaves much to be desired. It is enough that I have to run back and forth between the awkwardly placed elevators in order to optimize time by pushing both buttons. After dealing with that headache as well as the coming onslaught of problem sets and exams that the spring term will bring, it would be nice to see the administration begin working on some new options. First things first, though — please let me eat donuts whenever I want.

Austin Oehlerking ’08