Starting on Saturday, Sept. 3, the University will provide students on the unlimited meal plan with $150 worth of dining points each semester for purchasing food and non-alcoholic beverages at various on- and off-campus locations.
According to an email announcement from the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) on Aug. 22, the program will provide “an opportunity for students to connect with each other and the town of Princeton without having to worry about paying out of pocket.”
USG Community Dining Task Force Chair Stephen Daniels ’24 told the ‘Prince’ he hopes this program will improve access to activities like bonding with friends over food and meeting professors for coffee, as “eating meals together is a huge part of building relationships at Princeton.”
Participating locations in town currently include Jammin’ Crêpes on Nassau Street, Proof Pizzeria, Small World Coffee on Witherspoon Street, Say Cheez Café, and The Bent Spoon, though the TigerCard website includes a note encouraging students to “stay tuned for more off-campus locations in the near future.”
The website also states that points will roll over from the fall semester into the spring, but unused points will expire at the end of the academic year. Sophomores will also have the option to put dining points towards eating club dues in the spring.
On campus, points will be applicable at most dining locations, including Frist Campus Center, Coffee Club, E-Quad Cafe, the U-Store, and others. The late meal program that allows students on meal plans to buy $8 worth of late lunch and dinner at Frist on weekdays remains unchanged.
Points will be automatically loaded onto the TigerCards of students with the unlimited meal plan at the start of the semester, and students will be able to check their dining points balance through an online portal. All first-year and sophomore students are required to hold the unlimited meal plan.
The new dining points system is different from existing Paw Points, which any student can elect to add to their TigerCard regardless of meal plan type, though students will now be able to use Paw Points at participating in-town locations as well.
The program comes as a result of efforts by University Services and the USG Community Dining Task Force, which ran a trial run community dining program last year. USG’s email announcement noted that greater flexibility and more food options near the E-Quad were incorporated as a result of feedback from the pilot program.
“I am really excited about what this means for the student body and for the meaningful impact that USG can continue to have on the student experience,” Daniels wrote. “This should be viewed as a start and not as an end for what we can do to facilitate community.”
Annie Rupertus is a sophomore from Philadelphia and a News staff writer who covers USG for the ‘Prince.’ She can be reached at email@example.com or @annierupertus on Instagram and Twitter.