Campus Dining

Chicago, IL
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3 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: I had a meal plan last year but no this year. The reason I decided not to get a meal plan is because it's inconvenient for me. The dining is not in my dorm, the food was okay not a lot of variety, not healthy, and over priced.

3 College Freshman

Campus Dining: The food is decent, but not worth all that we are paying.

3 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: There's only 1 dining hall in one of the dorms. Most people live in student Apartments and don't have meal plans

3 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: There is many options on what there is to eat, just a lot of the food does not have high quality of taste.

3 College Freshman

Campus Dining: Having a meal plan is convenient, but it seems like it would be cheaper to just buy and make your own food because when you do the math, each meal is about $10 each. It is a really nice option to have when you do not have time to cook for yourself or buy groceries. There is a decent variety of food options available each day, but sometimes it looks weird or does not seem appealing, so I just get a sub or something similar. We get a pretty good amount of flex dollars to use with out meal plan, which is nice because they offer pretty good food to buy with the flex dollars. The only annoying part about campus dining is that the people who do not live in the building it is located in have to always walk there to get their food. At the same time, they get some exercise because it's only about a five minute walk, but sometimes it can also be slightly inconvenient.


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 207th
    Best Vegetarian/Vegan-Friendly Options
  • 231st
    Best Ethnic/Kosher Options
  • 360th
    Healthiest Dining Options
  • 410th
    Best Late-Night Dining Options
  • 467th
    Best Cafeteria Variety

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Whitney Fox
Topeka, Kansas
Television Writing and Producing
View all previous student authors

Any student may apply for a meal plan. Students that live on campus may pay for a meal plan in addition to their living costs with Residence Life. Residents assigned to apartments may choose to apply for an optional, supplementary meal plan. The plan includes 150 meals for the academic year (fall and spring semesters), plus $250 in "flex" dollars to spend at the student’s discretion within the dining facility. Please understand that this plan is strictly supplementary, as it allows an average of five meals per week. Supplementary meal plans cost approximately $1,600; several hundred plans are available for purchase each year and are made available on a first-come, first-served basis until all are sold. Detailed meal plan information will be included in your housing contract packet.

However, for those living in apartments, apartment units do have full kitchens that include a full-sized refrigerator, oven, range, and dishwasher. Residents without meal plans cook for themselves and often share cooking duties with their roommates. Two major grocery stores are within walking distance of the residence centers, or students may order groceries online through a commercial provider (such as Peapod™). Meal preparation is an important part of the independent living experience available to students.

Facts & Statistics

Freshman Meal Plan Required?
If you live in the University Center dormitories, a meal plan is required. Otherwise, no freshman student has to have a meal plan to live on campus.
Student Favorites: Campus Dining Hall
The University Center
Student Favorites: Campus Restaurant/Vendor
Plum Café offers delicious eats throughout campus. Treat yourself to hot breakfasts, lunch, and snack items, as well as enjoy a peaceful meeting spot.
Student Favorites: Breakfast Food on Campus
  • Caribou Coffee
  • Dunkin' Donuts
  • Starbucks - Michigan Avenue
Student Favorites: Lunch/Dinner Entrée on Campus
Harold's Chicken Shack
Student Favorites: Late-night Snack on Campus
Pauly's Pizzeria
24-Hour Dining
Off-Campus Places to Use Flex Money
Special Options
Looking for flavor with less fat and calories? The best cooks know the secrets for preparing great tasting food that's good for you. They know how to make it healthy and delicious. They've learned ways to prepare flavorful healthy food and so can you. They bake, steam, toss, grill, simmer, top, and stir-fry their way to flavor and health. Tasty, healthy food starts with the right ingredients, but the way you cook it can make all the difference.

Dining Halls & Campus RestaurantsWhat's This?

Location: 525 S. State St., second floor
Food: Coffee
Hours: Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-12 a.m., Saturday-Sunday 11 a.m.-12 a.m.
University Center Dining Room
Location: 525 S. State St., second floor
Food: Everything you can imagine
Hours: Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-12 a.m., Saturday-Sunday 11 a.m.-12 a.m.

Student Polls

What are the best food options on campus?    Based on 9 responses

  • 26% Pauly's or Harolds
  • 21% Panda Express
  • 11% Toppers
  • 11% Devil Dawgs
  • 11% Five Guys
  • 11% Pretty much anything on Wabash
  • 5% Epic burger
  • 5% Panera

Rate campus dining on the following topics    Based on 83 responses

Very poor
  • Availability
  • Ethnic/kosher options
  • Healthy/organic options
  • Late-night options
  • Quality
  • Value
  • Variety/number of options
  • Vegetarian/vegan options

What are the best things about the campus meal plan?    Based on 6 responses

  • 50% Meeting other students from different colleges
  • 33% I've heard the food is OK, standard cafeteria food
  • 17% The ease of access and the quality of food

What are the worst things about the campus meal plan?    Based on 7 responses

  • 86% The meal plan isn't worth the cost.
  • 14% You can't buy just a single meal

What are the worst food options on campus?    Based on 6 responses

  • 100% The dining hall.


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