Starbucks and Burger King will have to stand test of time

Gone is the familiar smell of chemicals used to protect the library books from mold that students associated with entering the Library. Now, students and faculty are greeted with the brisk aromas of espressos and cappuccinos as well as the smell of grilled burgers elsewhere around campus.

The official opening of the Starbucks and Burger King on campus was initially met with mixed reviews. Some students were unhappy about the construction taking place in the Library lobby for the popular coffee chain. Others felt it was unnecessary to add additional coffee and fast food chains to campus because they already have such a hold on the area.

There are more than 19 Starbucks in the immediate Tampa area, three of which are within four miles of the USF campus. According to Starbucks’ Web site, Florida has a total of 227 stores out of the 5,400 nationwide.

The USF Library location officially opened Monday, but it was open for exam week last semester and replaced the smaller Gourmet Bean that previously occupied the space in the Library.

In addition to Starbucks, students can now frequent the new Burger King that officially opened Monday. While it is not the first fast food chain to be offered on campus, it is the largest that offers a full menu and the first to have its own building, designed in school colors.

In the past a common complaint from students was that the food from the Phyllis P. Marshall Center and other locations on campus is overpriced. The new Burger King’s prices are the same on campus as they are off, and aren’t marked up just for their convenient locale.

At first glance the newest corporate chains that got a foothold on campus mainly have positive effects on the campus community.

Only time will tell if the stores can cater to minorities such as vegetarians or religious groups with specific diets. The smell of freshly grilled Whoppers wafting across campus might be seen as a nuisance rather than an appetizing feature new to the campus once the novelty wears off. For now though, extra food options for this growing campus are a welcome addition.