Dining Dollars allows K-State students, faculty to cash in on dining options across campus

Union Station by JP's is one of the many campus retail locations participating in the Dining Dollars program. (Archive photo by Brooke Barrett | Collegian Media Group)

Housing and Dining Services partnered with the Kansas State Student Union to introduce Dining Dollars, a new program designed to add flexibility to on-campus residents’ meal plans.

The Dining Dollars addition allows food purchases at participating campus retail locations besides the dining centers. The dollars are added to K-State ID cards and billed to the user’s KSIS account.

Audrey Taggart-Kagdis, director of marketing and student programs for the Union, said the program’s revamping gives students more flexibility as an optional addition to the existing meal plans.

“This came from student feedback from previous years, where students expressed the need for flexibility in their dining plan, rather than being limited to the dining hall,” Taggart-Kagdis said.

Rather than being restricted to the dining halls, students living on-campus can now use Dining Dollars to enjoy more options across campus, including retail businesses in the Union, at Jardine Apartments and Radina’s Coffee House.

Jeff Clark, assistant director of retail services for the Union, said the program is a partnership between Housing and Dining Services and Retail Services on campus, allowing considerable improvement in the flexibility of student meal services.

Off-campus students, as well as staff and faculty, can also use the program. Students are billed to their KSIS account, similar to on-campus residents. Faculty and staff pay with either cash, credit card or payroll deductions.

Students, faculty and staff who participate in the Dining Dollars program also receive monthly perks at participating locations. For August, the member deal is a free game of bowling, free shoe rental and a non-alcoholic beverage in the Union Bowling Center.

September’s benefit is one free Chick-fil-A meal during the month with the choice of either a chicken sandwich, spicy chicken sandwich or 8-count nugget meal.

Chick-fil-A team member Jasmine Morey, senior in animal science and industry, said she has already seen people use the new dining system.

“We have already had a few people use the Dining Dollars, and I think that we will have lots of students use the free meal they get this next month,” Morey said.

Students, faculty and staff can purchase Dining Dollars and view the upcoming monthly member deals on the Housing and Dining Services website.