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College Will Extend Spring Break Dining Pilot This Year

After piloting a spring break meal plan program last school year that kept some undergraduate dining halls open for students on campus, the College will offer a similar meal program next spring.

The pilot, funded by the Dean of the College’s Office, came out of recommendations made by two committees focused on issues of diversity and inclusion at the College, according to Emelyn A. dela Peña, the College's assistant dean of student life for equity, diversity, and inclusion.

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“It was recommended by both the Walton Group and the Working Group on First Generation College Students,” dela Peña wrote in an email. “Both committees discussed the hardship that our low-income students faced during Spring Break when they have to buy meals in the square. So, yes this was spurred by a desire to address equity and inclusion issues.”

The pilot program was modeled after the limited meal plan the College offers over winter break, when selected Houses remain open for meals. The College covered the costs of the expanded spring dining options by tightening the budget in other areas, including suspending per day allowances for athletes over the break.

The move also followed calls for the program from students. In 2013, Undergraduate Council leaders approved legislation requesting that the College provide more dining options to students during spring break.

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Dean of the College Rakesh Khurana said in an interview last year that his office would evaluate data from the pilot program when deciding whether to expand it in future years.

Miles Hewitt ’17 was among a number of students who stayed on campus last spring break. He said he hoped to see the program continue in future years.

“It makes a lot of sense, rather than having us scavenge around,” Hewitt said. “I was here freshman year... That involved some stockpiling of emergency sandwiches.”

Administrators are still refining how they will implement this school year’s spring break dining program, according to Faculty of Arts and Sciences spokesperson Rachael Dane.

—Staff writer Ivan B. K. Levingston can be reached at Ivan.Levingston@thecrimson.com. Follow him on Twitter @IvanLevingston.

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