Dining options may move off-campus
Students may soon be able to use their declining balance accounts to make purchases off-campus. Student Government Association (SGA) and Jerry Price, vice chancellor for student affairs and dean of students, are teaming up with stores and restaurants in the Orange Circle.
Chris Joondeph, SGA president, said the system would work much like a debit card system. The students or parents would deposit money into their declining balance accounts at Chapman and then the students can go to the participating stores or eateries and pay with their student ID card.
Many businesses have already agreed to purchase a machine, Joondeph said. “So far we have businesses like The Bite Market, Links Sausage, Jalapeños, Plaza 149, Wahoo’s Fish Tacos and Chapman Coffee House willing to be a part of this,” he said.
Bridget Reilly, owner of The Bite Market on 162 N. Glassell St., said she has called some other universities to see how businesses around them acquired their machines. Depending on the type, the machines can cost business owners anywhere from $200 to $400.
“The system would cost nothing for Chapman,” Joondeph said.
Joondeph and Reilly said the new system will provide security for parents of students.
“This gives parents options, knowing that what they deposit goes towards food and groceries as opposed to clothes and alcohol,” Joondeph said.
Reilly said the new system will not only benefit students, but also increase business for her store.
“I have a lot of students who shop here with dietary needs or who want a different variety of foods than Chapman offers,” Reilly said. “This will provide more options for them and especially those in dorms with no kitchen.”
Joondeph said Panther Bucks can’t be used instead of declining balance accounts because when students pay for Panther Bucks, that money goes directly back to Sodexo and Chapman. He said if students were to use Panther Bucks off campus, Sodexo would have to raise meal plan prices to compensate for the lost revenue.
Price said restaurants and stores are willing to give a 5 to 10 percent discount to students using the declining balance system.
“I already give a 5 percent discount to Chapman students, but I am totally willing to [give them] 10 percent,” Reilly said.
Joondeph also said that this new idea could help with neighborhood relations.
“We would be putting a lot of money into the circle, which both helps their business and showcases Chapman,” Joondeph said.
Reilly already has a petition with more than 500 signatures at her store. Students, parents, local business owners and Chapman faculty have been among the names on the list.
Tom Wise, a senior public relations and advertising major, said he would ideally like to use declining balance credit at Kimmie’s Coffee Cup at 190 S. Glassell if the program is implemented.
“[Dining] space is limited on campus, so why not try to utilize more options?” Wise said.