Campus Dining

Mechanicsburg, PA
Admission Difficulty
More statistics . . .
YesI'm interested, let this school know MaybeBookmark for later NoShow me better matches What does it mean to express interest?
Oops! There was an error.

Reload the page and try again.

Saving your interest We will attempt to notify this school of your interest. This school has been saved to your schools listyour schools list. This school has been removed from your recommended schools list.
For more schools, visit your recommended schools list.


{{ error }}
4 College Freshman

Campus Dining: I like the dining options on campus. My meal plan allows me to get really good discounts most places, and since I don't have a car it's the most convenient option for me.

3 College Freshman

Campus Dining: It is good for the most part, weekends it can get a bit sparse however.

4 College Freshman

Campus Dining: There are three options at the school and I really like this aspect. Each is geared toward a different "style" of food.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Campus Dining: Let's be honest, any given day on campus not many people rave about campus dining, but we truly are spoiled. My favorite place to eat is the Falcon! It's basically like Panera, fantastic paninis and salads...yummy sandwiches, and Starbucks coffee made to order. That's only open weekdays until 5 pm, so dinner is always at the Union or Lottie dining hall, which are also great! And, the chefs are all great people! Lots of students work for dining services.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Campus Dining: I'm biased, my parents own a restaurant so I'm used to good food. But compared to other colleges, Messiah does pretty well, even winning some awards for their dining hall food. We have one on-campus dining hall- Lottie Nelson (Build your own omelet/burger bar, stir fry bar, ramen/burrito bar, soup, sandwich, salad, dessert, waffles, fresh fruits/veggies, and then 2 hot meal options from the buffet line) as well as two "retail dining" locations- The Union Cafe (Grill/fried items, smoothies, ice cream, wraps, pizza, flatbread melts, salads and starbucks. Also contains the convenience mart), and the Falcon (soup, salad, panini, rice bowl, starbucks, pastries and mini-mart.). The Union is pretty good and the falcon is ok. Everything is made to order. The Union has the best availability- it has the longest hours, while the falcon is only open until 3pm each weekday. Falcon is good to meet with a professor for lunch.
Our meal plan is the bad part. we have all flex dollars, which doesn't sound bad except for the $2000 meal plan, we get $850 flex. The other 1,150 pays all "operational costs" for the semester which allows your food to be "subsidized" to 50% off the regular price at all three locations. It doesn't make much sense and we don't know why they do it. I don't know of anyone who has run out of money, and we get any leftover flex dollars back at the end of the semester, so that's not too bad.


{{review.SectionLabel}} at {{review.EntityName}}:

{{review.Votes}} found this useful - Did you? Was this useful? Yes Report

Sorry, there are no reviews.

  • {{settings.pageNumber}} of {{settings.maxPages}}
  • Pages:
  • ... {{page}}

Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 263rd
    Best Quality Food
  • 612nd
    Best Vegetarian/Vegan-Friendly Options
  • 639th
    Healthiest Dining Options
  • 656th
    Best Cafeteria Variety
  • 777th
    Best Ethnic/Kosher Options

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Ashley Offenback
Yardley, Pa.
View all previous student authors

Hungry students at Messiah have three options for on-campus meals: Lottie Nelson Dining Hall, Union Café, and Falcon Express. Lottie is the main dining room and offers an array of all-you-care-to-eat food. The quality is great, and the desserts receive exceptional student reviews. The variety is average, and there are weekly meals that are usually the same; for example, Tuesday is “Turkey Tuesday.” Some good news: It is possible to eat healthy! Unfortunately, though, for all the healthy choices Lottie offers, it presents just as many oh-so-tempting unhealthy choices. Vegetarians find that Lottie meals demand a good amount of creativity as the hot food lines rarely offer meatless options. Vegetarians say it’s often necessary to incorporate ingredients from separate stations in Lottie in order to pull together an adequate meal. In addition to the hot-meal line, Lottie offers a great assortment of bagels, coffee, desserts, drinks, salad, sandwiches, soups, and waffles.

The Union Café in the student union provides a wide selection of made-to-order food in exchange for flex money, Falcon Dollars, or cash. There is great variety here with six separate food stations serving Mexican, frozen desserts, grilled and fried favorites, pizza, sandwiches and salads, and Starbucks coffee. In addition to these fresh options, the Union provides a great assortment of grab-and-go items. The value, however, is poor because the food is pretty expensive here, and freshmen only receive $200 in flex money with their meal plan. Falcon Express is a small cafeteria and, though it recently received a complete menu makeover, it is more popular with teachers than students. The Falcon Express offers a petite menu of breakfast, fried favorites, sandwiches, and salads.

Facts & Statistics

Meal Plan Available?
Average Meals/Week
Average Meal Plan Cost
$4120 per year
Freshman Meal Plan Required?
All students living in dormitory housing are required to have a meal plan.
Student Favorites: Campus Dining Hall
Lottie Nelson Dining Hall
Student Favorites: Campus Restaurant/Vendor
Union Café
Student Favorites: Breakfast Food on Campus
  • Egg McFalcon
  • French toast sticks
  • Lottie yogurt bar
Student Favorites: Lunch/Dinner Entrée on Campus
  • Chicken Cordon Bleu
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Mongolian stir-fry at Lottie
Student Favorites: Late-night Snack on Campus
  • Pizza from the Union
  • Smoothies from the Union
24-Hour Dining
Off-Campus Places to Use Flex Money
Special Options
  • Bag meals are provided to students traveling off campus on official college business or who have unavoidable scheduling conflicts.
  • Pizza delivery from the Union is available every day from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Sick trays are available to students with a written note from a nurse, residence director, or residence assistant.
Did You Know?
  • Holiday meals (Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter) in Lottie are amazing and admired not only by students, but by teachers, community members, and local families, as well. Arrive early and be prepared to wait at least a half-hour to enter and even longer to find seating. However, the long wait is well worth-the dining room is transformed into a Mecca of holiday spirit with ice sculptures, live music, and grand decorations, and the food is upgraded to seafood, meat carving stations, sparkling cider, and high-class desserts.
  • Freshmen have the choice of two meal plans: Without Limits Ultra with $100 flex or 210 Meals/$200 Flex per semester. Most freshmen choose Without Limits Ultra-this is the better deal since both meal plans cost the same, and it is beyond convenient to stop by Lottie between classes for a quick cup of coffee, ice cream cone, or bagel without having to worry about using a whole meal. Just don't forget to use those flex dollars at the Union or Falcon Express-they expire at the end of each semester.
  • During finals week, each dining facility offers a study break with free food between 10 p.m. and 12 a.m. These are highly anticipated, and favorites include Lottie Pancake Night and free ice cream from the Union. Here's a tip: Get there late! Most people go early expecting to get the best food, but at 10, there will be long lines and small portions. By 11:30, the place will be empty and the food replenished.

Dining Halls & Campus RestaurantsWhat's This?

Falcon Express
Location: Eisenhower Campus Center, first floor
Food: Deli, grab-and-go snacks, grill, pizza
Hours: Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Lottie Nelson Dining Hall
Location: Eisenhower Campus Center, second floor
Food: All-you-care-to-eat breakfast, deli, desserts, grill, salad bar, soups
Hours: Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-9:30 a.m., 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 4:45 p.m.-7:30 p.m., Saturday-Sunday 7 a.m.-2 p.m., 4:45 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
Union Café
Location: Larsen Student Union
Food: Frozen desserts, grab-and-go snacks, grill items, made-to-order sandwiches, pizza, salads, Starbucks
Hours: Monday-Thursday 7:30 a.m.-11 p.m., Friday 7:30 a.m.-12 a.m., Saturday 1 p.m.-12 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m.-11 p.m.

Student Polls

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
pageviews remaining

Non-registered users are limited to 5 school profile page views per month.

Register for free to gain full access!