Bucknell University uses Parkhearst as the supplier of all the food on campus. In other words Parkhearst has a monopoly on all things food and beverage at Bucknell. I think that having diversity in dining options would be much better for Bucknell and its students.
When students go to the Bison or the Bostwick Cafeteria, they can only get food prepared by Parkhearst. I think this is ridiculous. Since Parkhearst is the only show in town they are able to get away with things that they wouldn’t if there was competition. The Bison is overpriced, has poor service and the food is mediocre. I think that Bucknell should not renew its contract with Parkhearst and instead invite multiple different food vendors. A few that come to mind right now are Chipotle, Subway, Dunkin Donuts, Panera, and DQ. Students would have a lot more options and the food would be infinitely better.
With these different options, customer satisfaction would be a much higher priority. As of right now, all students need to be on a meal plan. That means that Parkhearst doesn’t have to worry about customer satisfaction because we are forced to buy meal plans that only work at Parkhearst facilities. This type of dining service already exists on many campuses around the country. We could even continue to have the same type of meal plans. What could happen is students would be able to use their declining dollars at any of the food vendors on campus and then that food vendor would gain that money.
I think that the food options at Bucknell have been overlooked for sometime and it is time that we started thinking about it. I believe that this would increase student life on campus.