The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Eating Good

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Soft pretzel, captioned "Eating Good"

I’m rich! I feel like that businessman you see in movies at a fancy restaurant, who nonchalantly says to the waiter, “Put it all on my tab.” I bet you’re wondering how I could possibly be saying I’m rich when by bank account is in the double digits...


Well, I may not be rich in cash, but I do have a lot of YCMP swipes left. So what I mean to say is that I’m rich at places that accept YCMP swipes (nearly all dining commons and retail food locations on campus).  


You're probably wondering what YCMP swipes are. You also may be wondering how many times I have accidentally referred to them as “YMCAs." To answer your first question, YCMPs are a type of payment that come on certain commuter meal plans (open to any students living off campus). Each YCMP is worth $10 at retail dining locations, or can be used as a swipe into any dining hall. To answer your second question, I have made that mistake a lot.


This semester, I was on YCMP 155, which includes 155 DC/Retail Meals + $200 Dining Dollars. Like YCMP’s, Dining Dollars can be used at all retail dining locations, food trucks, University Club & Restaurant, UPub, concessions and dining commons.  Dining Dollars roll over by semester, meaning if you have $70 extra Dining Dollars at the end of fall semester, you will have $70 extra Dining Dollars in the spring. 


I was so worried about running out of YCMPs that I was very frugal with my swipes for the first few months of school. I would make the most out of grocery store trips and take whatever free food I could get. Now, with ten days left in my semester, I have over 50 swipes left!! That is $500 dollars worth of YCMPs.  


Now, on a daily basis, I can get my morning latte, afternoon gym smoothie, and get freshly-made meals and snacks at Harvest Market. At this point, my roomies and I have so many leftover swipes that we are actually asking people if they want us to pay for their meals! Looking back, I definitely could have settled for a meal plan with less YCMPs, but being able to eat good and give to other people definitely makes finals week more bearable.


[Thumbnail picture is of the delicious pretzles our amazing dining halls sometimes serve]



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