Swiping right on brown bags: Student government proposes meal swipes at lectures and club meetings

SStudents may soon be able to use meal swipes at club meetings and brown bags. (Jessica Furtado 19.)

SStudents may soon be able to use meal swipes at club meetings and brown bags. (Jessica Furtado ’19.)

Lafayette College Student Government is in the process of creating a new LafSync form that will allow students to use meal swipes to get food at club meetings and brown bag lectures.

Chair of Student Organizations Connor Burwell ‘19 has been very involved in creating the form. He said that he hopes the form will be completed by the end of the semester and that clubs and student organizations will begin to use it in the coming fall.

Since the implementation of a new budget system in 2014, student government stopped funding food for club meetings and brown bag lectures past each club’s first meeting.

“A lot of our budget, coming out of the student activities fees that could be used to host concerts, big events, and trips, it was just being used on pizza,” Burwell said.

While Burwell was not at the college at the time when this new policy was announced, he said that many student organizations were not happy with the decision, so he has been working to make food more accessible again.

Burwell said that clubs and meetings can currently use students’ meal swipes for food through Lafayette Catering Services. However, most students are unfamiliar with this process, he said.

“[To use catering services], you have to make an account specifically for their website, so it’s pretty unwieldy,” Burwell said. “It’s a service that already exists, so I’m trying to streamline it and make it more accessible.”

By moving the process to LafSync, Lafayette’s new community website, Burwell said he hopes that more students will utilize catering services for their lunchtime events.

Currently, academic programs more actively use catering services than clubs and are more familiar with the process than students are, Burwell said.

“A lot of the academic programming is already using it, because they’re used to working with catering services, so they already have accounts on the websites and a dedicated staff member just for that,” he said.

Coordinator of the Engineering Division Lisa Karam has been using catering services to provide students food at brown bag lectures using their meal swipes for a few years now.

“What I do for [Engineering Science 101] is I have students pre-register for events and then about a week before, I send over their L numbers,” Karam said. “It works very well because we’re not paying for extra lunches and we’re not wasting meals.”

Karam said that she thinks it would be beneficial for clubs and organizations to also adopt this method for feeding students.