Adding Pony Express to menu

Rumbling stomachs are a common sound on campus as students move between classes, or from their classes to their cars. We’ve all been there – in a rush to get from home to class, waking up late and making the choice to skip breakfast at the risk of missing a quiz or test.

Unless you live on the residential side of campus, make a trip to the Curris Center or have a class in the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business the options for a quick meal or even a place to sit down, relax and grab a cup of coffee are slim.

That is the case now, but it won’t be in the future. Early next semester, students across campus will be serviced by a food truck that will go far to fill in some of the gaps in student access to a quick and quality meal on campus.

With The News residing in Wilson Hall, we’re certainly glad to see an option that will not require a trek across campus to the Curris Center, a stop in at Waterfield Library or a walk over to the Business Building and we applaud the University for its effort to make dining more accessible for more students at Murray State.

We do however have some constructive criticism in way of the food truck. The Pony Express as it will be known, will be another addition to our palette of food options and it will be a welcome extension of Dining Services to the academic side of campus – but why is it that we simply cannot build another sit-down, brick and mortar establishment on the academic side of campus for students?

The argument might be that Murray State is hurting financially at the moment and that a food truck is simply the cheaper option if we are to serve commuters and students who spend a majority of their time on the academic side of campus.

While that argument has some appeal, we should note that nearly a year ago, at a time when the University was also in a bad spot financially, the administration was pushing for another library.

Color us skeptical at best and cynical at worst whenever the administration starts talking dollars and cents.

Or maybe the argument could be that there might not be adequate demand on the part of students for another dining establishment on campus.

If the number of students that frequent The Burrito Shack and Matt B’s are any indication, that too seems like a suspect argument. Murray State is missing out on a huge opportunity to make more money while servicing students’ need to feed before and after class.

A new addition to Dining Services on the academic side of campus would be a win-win situation for everyone involved. Students who don’t live in the residential colleges or who don’t have the time to stop at Starbooks or Winslow Dining Hall would have a place to stop to grab a quick bite to eat on their way to class.

Murray State would be able to raise money from the subsequent sales and be able to use the money to shore up its overall finances or expand existing programs (or maybe give a raise here or there to the hardworking people who work at Dining Services – here’s hoping).

It also goes without saying that the people of Murray would have an opportunity to help build such an establishment.

But this of course is a suggestion and a suggestion only.

Dining Services hasn’t announced anything beyond the Pony Express coming to campus and changes to both Winslow and the Thoroughbred Room – but that doesn’t have to be the end of it.

Last week we editorialized on the need for students to become active and to get involved on campus.

This is a prime example of what student organization could get done – if you want something like this to happen, if you want to see more options for dining on campus, get organized and make it happen!

The staff editorial is the majority opinion of  The Murray State News Editorial Board.