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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

‘Anytime meal plan’ the only option starting fall 2011

Similar to old carte blanche, new system offers best value

At the end of last semester, Marquette administrators announced the “Block” meal plan options will be discontinued next year. Starting in the fall, the new “Anytime Dining Plan” — basically the current Carte Blanche plan — is the only meal choice for students living in the residence halls.

According to Dean of Residence Life Jim McMahon, the unlimited plan was expected to balloon from $3,830 this school year to $4,100 in 2011-2012. Now that the block plans have been eliminated, the plan will cost $3,610 . But there was some level of displeasure with the announcement, as the decision was made without any forewarning to most Marquette Student Government members.

On Wednesday, MUSG President Meghan Ladwig, a senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, said she was not as concerned about the lack of MUSG and Residence Hall Association input as she was with the lack of any clear student input at all.

Going forward, Ladwig said a committee of 10 students will meet with Todd Vicker, executive director of the Alumni Memorial Union and auxiliary services, and other Sodexo representatives to discuss changes and plans. The committee will be known as the “Dining Advisory Board,” she said.

This should allow for more input from a larger group of students, she said.

On Dec. 8, administrators made the decision to move ahead with the new plan. McMahon apologized “for not getting the leaders (of MUSG and the RHA) involved.”

McMahon, who notified MUSG of the switch Dec. 9, said the university is looking to provide students with the best value.

The new unlimited plan will cost the same amount that a Block 175 plan was expected to cost next year. Additionally, students living off campus can still purchase the “Loyalty 50 Plan” for $325, he said.

While McMahon said the university is looking to give the best value to students, other members of MUSG questioned after McMahon’s presentation whether taking away options for less expensive plans was the right move.

Vicker said he does not anticipate this being a problem for students because students on the Block 125 plan would have had to supplement their diet with other meals in the first place.

He added this plan will allow students to eat anytime they want for only a little more than $1 per day more than the Block 125 plan cost.

“I think it is an ideal situation for students,” Vicker said. “You are getting an ‘all-you-can-get’ at a middle level price, which is what we aimed for.”


  • The new “Anytime Dining Plan” includes 10 guest passes and 50 Dining Dollars, essentially making it the same as the Carte Blanche option.
  • The plan, which costs $490 less than the 2011-2012 Carte Blanche plan would cost, will be “revenue neutral” to the university, according to Jim McMahon, dean of Residence Life.
  • The university is eliminating the “Block” options partly because 83 percent of the purchased meal plans were either Carte Blanche or Block 175 this year, McMahon said.
  • The “Anytime Dining Plan” will be for a two-year trial run, at which point the success of the switch will be gauged.

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