Award-winning Dining Services, tel. (413) 545-2472, offers innovative and nutritious menus with a wide selection of choices. From display cooking, traditional and international dishes, comfort foods, pizza, grill items, pasta, salad, sushi, and omelet bars, to noodle bowls, vegan and vegetarian dishes, Dining Services provides an array of options to fit the dietary needs and desires of students. Menus, designed by a task force of students, the director, managers, chefs, registered dietitian, pastry chef, and executive chef, are based on sound nutritional guidelines, surveys of student food preferences, mystery shoppers’ reports, and comments from students and staff.
Four dining commons, serving students with all-you-care-to-eat options, are located in residential areas: Hampshire and Berkshire Dining Commons in Southwest; Worcester Dining Commons in Northeast; and Franklin Dining Commons in Central. Meals are continuously available from 7 a.m. to midnight Sunday to Thursday, and from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Hours of operation are subject to change. The UCard (the University student ID card) serves as a student’s meal card, and is required for entrance to all facilities for meal plan participants.
Residential meal plans are mandatory for all undergraduates who are required to live in University residence halls. This includes freshmen, sophomores and Stockbridge students as recognized by the University Registrar’s Office. Students who are not required to purchase a meal plan but who wish to eat in the dining commons and/or retail operations can either purchase a residential meal plan or Your Campus Meal Plan, or pay à la carte.
Residential Meal Plans
These meal plans are “Block Plans” and offer a specific number of meals for the whole semester with no weekly limit. The Unlimited plan provides unlimited access to all of the dining commons. The Value plan offers 224 meals per semester, an average of 14 meals per week. Meals can be eaten any day of the week, including weekends, at any of the dining commons. Both plans offer guest passes and meal exchanges, which allow students to eat in the Dining Services retail facilities during the semester. Residents of the North Apartment complex with fewer than 57 completed credits are required to be on a residential meal plan, which includes the Special Apartment Meal Plan. This plan offers 112 meals per semester, an average of 7 meals per week. The meal plan is optional for North Apartment residents with more than 57 completed credits.
Optional Meal Plans
Your Campus Meal Plan (YCMP) takes several forms. The Platinum plan offers 200 meals per semester, the Gold plan offers 100 meals per semester, and the Silver plan offers 50 meals per semester. YCMP is available to residential students whom the University Registrar’s Office recognizes as juniors, seniors (not including Stockbridge students), commuters, and graduate students, Monday through Sunday, at any dining commons and at many cash operations on campus.
The Kosher meal plan, located at Franklin Dining Commons, is offered at a $200 fee additional to any of the meal plans. Eleven meals are offered each week (Sunday brunch, lunch Monday to Friday and dinner Monday to Thursday) as well as high holidays.
Halal meals are offered at Worcester Dining Commons Monday to Friday during the dinner hours.
Various eateries, food courts, and food carts are located in the Campus Center/Student Union complex. Menu selections range from multicultural items to fast foods, gourmet coffees, fresh fruit smoothies, and cooked-to-order daily specials. The Marketplace Café offers a variety of grilled breakfast and lunch items, as well as Café Talesai Thai Cuisine and the Pita Pit salads and sandwiches. The Bluewall Café provides Pura Vida (fair trade) coffee, Freshen’s Smoothies, and fresh-baked pastries/Bluewall Cookies. The Bluewall Eatery offers Star Ginger Asian Street Food, Famous Famiglia Pizza, French Meadow Organic Sandwiches, Tamales burritos and salads, and “Grab n’ Go” sushi, sandwiches, and salads. The Hatch Food Court is open for lunch Monday through Friday featuring such concepts as Sunset Strips, Tamales Mexican cuisine, Taj Mahal Indian cuisine, and a Zane’s Noodle Bowl. A Starbuck’s coffee cart on the concourse offers options for those in a hurry.
Dining Services operates four convenience stores located in Worcester, Franklin, and Hampden Dining Commons, and the Mini Store in the Student Union. Each stocks a variety of groceries, frozen foods, sundries, school supplies, and health care items, and is open daily.
Dining Services also manages the Whitmore Café, Herter Express, Thompson Hall Café, Integrated Sciences Building Café and Physical Plant Café Monday to Friday. The Procrastination Station, located at the Library, is open seven days a week. Southwest Café and Pita Pit are open from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. seven days a week.
The University Club, tel. (413) 545-2551, located in the historic Stockbridge House and Homestead, is open to students and their families Wednesday through Friday evenings and occasional Saturdays from 5 to 8 p.m. for à la carte dinners. It is also open Monday to Friday for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The University Club is also available for catered events such as rehearsal dinners, birthdays, dinner parties, and receptions all year round. For information, visit www.umass.edu/uclub/.