June 22, 2021

ASCEU addresses students concerns

Concerns with dining services and residential life were addressed by the Associated Students of the College of Eastern Utah when they met with associate vice president of student services, Dan Allen and key housing and food service personnel, before the holiday break in a campus forum held in the student center. Moderator for the forum was Steve Burge who set ground rules for the students and personnel in attendance. “We are not here to make personal attacks or to point fingers.” Post it notes and papers were passed out for students to write down their comments or concerns.

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Concerns with dining services and residential life were addressed by the Associated Students of the College of Eastern Utah when they met with associate vice president of student services, Dan Allen and key housing and food service personnel, before the holiday break in a campus forum held in the student center. Moderator for the forum was Steve Burge who set ground rules for the students and personnel in attendance. “We are not here to make personal attacks or to point fingers.” Post it notes and papers were passed out for students to write down their comments or concerns.
The student’s concerns were taped on a board in the front of the room. Students organized these concerns into categories: housing, food/people, cost of food and food. Each issue was addresses one at a time.
The first issue was campus housing. The students’ concerns included sponsoring more activities, more supervision, maintenance and “less talk more action.” Students feel that drugs and alcohol is an issue. There are not enough law enforcement employees on campus. It is a comfort for students to be able to see law enforcement on campus, they said.
Allen explained that students need to report any suspected abnormal activity that they see. There is a silent witness phone number that students can call to anonymously report suspicious things they see.
Financial aid director and ASCEU leadership adviser, Bill Osborn explained that students caught on campus drinking or using drugs are fined, given community service, sent to a drug evaluation and placed on probation. The second offence, a student will be brought to the Student Conduct Board.
A student suggested installing surveillance cameras on campus to reduce the workload of police and to act as a deterrent. Students feel that drinking on campus is increasing and that ATOD is a safe harbor that students can go to for help with such problems. Osborn said each athletic team holds drug and alcohol drug screening testing. Athletes lose the right to play or their scholarship if caught with drugs or alcohol.
The next category was visitation hours. One student is concerned about visitation hours and feels they are not being enforced. Students do no understand why there is visitation hours and quiet hours. What is the difference?
Osborn expressed that it is difficult to know how much space and freedom students should be allowed and how much enforcement should exist. An RA has expressed that he would like students to come to him for concerns. The students were told to call the HELP desk with their concerns.
The next student concern was the dining facility. Students’ major concerns with dining services were focused on the prices of food cards and the price of the food.
Osborn addressed this issue. He explained that there is always an ASCEU representative at every dining service meeting. He feels that CEU’s meal plan is one of the best around. There are two types of plans: all you can eat/buffet, or a debit system, or an all you can eat one time a day.
The plan that CEU has is a debit system. The minimum plan is $750. At CEU you can eat whenever you want. You do not have to give up a meal if you do not eat for a specific time. One third of a student’s meal card cost goes to cover the cost of food, 2/3 of the cost goes to staff, maintenance and other such things.
Osborn feels that the debit system is the best plan for students. Students get the most of their money with this plan. Every Tuesday at 3 p.m. Becky Jones, head cook, holds a meeting with students to discuss the menu plan for the week. She takes recipe ideas and other ideas.
A student suggested to have a specific meeting/ forum based on meal plans. He would like to look at various meal plans, and ideas with available statistics at the meeting. Students would like a lighter plan than exists now; such as $500. He asked, can we move the 2/3 of fees for the meal cards to student fees and have the 1/3 cost be more flexible?
Because of the time constraints, not all of the issues the students wanted discussed were addressed. The following list is all the concerns/ comments of the students written down at the meeting. Students want more housing activities, more supervision with drugs and alcohol abuse, cop patrol, food service is doing better than last year, rude food service workers, hours of food service being opened are ridiculous, student cards not helping, student meal plans need to change and a breakfast worker is smoking while he is working. He is unclean, smokes and then comes to serve me.
Other concerns include: If Sessions Dorm is closing, where will the students be put, why does it take maintenance weeks to fix a problem if they fix it at all, less talk more action, have the flies be removed from the kitchen, people living in Sessions are required to buy a food card. I purchased a whole card on light eater and still have $250 left. Could we lower the light-eater card?
Additional concerns: cleanliness of equipment is not good, i.e. soda and coffee machines are filthy and food being left out too long. It’s not really good if it is left out for hours. Students complain about the variety of meals, but they won’t give suggestions to change things, food service and the quality of food, students feel they pay too much money for the quality, meals cards shouldn’t be as much money as they are. It’s a waste of money when you can’t spend it all in one semester.
Some students thought there was inconsistent pricing between the grill and cafeteria, old cash registers, prices of the food is too expensive: $3.50 for one taco?
Other students asked why can’t left over money in their accounts be transferred to the next semester, a heater leak has ruined the corner of a student’s bedspread, over-priced food, food service takes student’s money at the end of each semester if they don’t use entire meal card and sanitary issue in Sessions’ bathrooms.
A student asked the dining services to sell tubs of sauce to go with pizza, allow rollover of meal cards, why is dining services not catering as much as they used to, why does dining services not sell chips, drinks and pre-packaged food, dining services should be run like a customer-service business, students need to understand contract agreements and why is maintenance more concerned with wild cats than they are with fixing things in the dorms?

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