Campus Dining

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3 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: could be worse, but not ideal

2 College Senior

Campus Dining: Being an arts school, we have a lot of vegetarians as well as many people with food allergies. The food choices at the dining hall and other on-campus restaurants are very minimal and typically unhealthy. The price of a meal plan here is outrageous but I never have a problem using it all up. There is a convenience store on campus, but unfortunately they only offer unhealthy junk food snacks for now. Luckily Sodexo is always taking suggestions and making improvements every semester.

3 College Junior

Campus Dining: Honestly the best food around is the places off campus in Chinatown or the restaurants just in Boston in general. But it's not always convenient for people living in the residence halls.

4 College Junior

Campus Dining: From what I hear it is the best.

3 College Junior

Campus Dining: It's not great. It's cafeteria food, and almost always I feel fine eating it afterward. Variety could increase, as well as flexibility with the meal plan, but other than that the Max and emCafe are more than acceptable for me.


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 162nd
    Best Vegetarian/Vegan-Friendly Options
  • 222nd
    Healthiest Dining Options
  • 419th
    Best Cafeteria Variety
  • 421st
    Best Late-Night Dining Options
  • 869th
    Best Quality Food

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Vanessa Willoughby
Waterford, CT
Writing, Literature and Publishing
View all previous student authors

Plenty of students gripe about the dining hall, but that’s because Emerson students like to complain. The meal plans are generous, and few students who choose the block meal plan complain about not getting enough food. The dining hall is all-you-can-eat, which means if you run out of meals by the end of the semester, you can always stay in the dining hall all day and keep eating for the price of one meal. Meal plans also provide students with a certain amount of Board Bucks, which can be debited from the student’s ID in either of the campus convenience stores. The dining hall has a salad bar, cereal bar, dessert bar, ice cream freezer, juice and soda fountains, vegan station, grill, and pizza spot. The food isn’t bad—it has flavor, appropriate texture, and isn’t soaked in grease. There are also plenty of options for vegan and vegetarian dining, including a few faux meat items.

Due to its size, there are only three spots on campus where students can eat, and the dining hall is the only place that accepts the meal plan. The Emerson Café has a few sandwich and salad options, and it accepts ECcash. Eating in the dining hall for three or four months straight can get to be nauseating, but the same goes for any school. Overall, the on-campus eating situation is a good one.

Facts & Statistics

Average Meal Plan Cost
$5882 per year
Freshman Meal Plan Required?
24-Hour Dining
Off-Campus Places to Use Flex Money
Special Options
Don't feel like braving the crowd at the dining hall? Try going to The Max on the second floor of 150 Boylston St. The Max has a small café where you can get paninis, cheeseburgers, pasta, and salads.
Did You Know?
The dining hall doubles as a screening room for some student organizations' events.

Dining Halls & Campus RestaurantsWhat's This?

Emerson's Cafe
Location: 80 Boylston St.
Food: Coffee, baked goods, sandwiches, soups, wraps
Hours: Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-9 p.m.,7 a.m.-7 p.m.
Little Building Dining Hall
Location: 80 Boylston St.
Food: All-you-can-eat grill items, pasta, pizza, salad bar, vegan station
Hours: Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Saturday-Sunday 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
The Max
Location: Max Mutchnick Building, second floor
Food: Grill items, pasta, pizza, salads, stir-fry
Hours: Daily 11 a.m.-1 a.m.

Student Polls

Rate campus dining on the following topics    Based on 47 responses

Very poor
  • Convenient hours
  • 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 5 responses

  • 43% Nothing
  • 29% Cost does not equate to quality
  • 14% The Max
  • 14% You don't actually have to go outside

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

  • 50% The Emerson Cafe, or the Paramount Cafe
  • 33% The Max
  • 17% The Paramount Cafe

What are the worst food options on campus?    Based on 5 responses

  • 40% Everything
  • 40% The Little Building Dining Hall
  • 20% The Emerson Cafe
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