Letters to the Editor

Dining Services steps up to vegan plate

I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the USF Dining Services for the new and updated menu items featured at the Fresh Food Company located at the Argos Center.

The improvements that have been made in the recent months are astonishing. Now there is soymilk, plenty of tofu, vegan Gardenburgers, veggie platters and great salads.

Everyone who is a vegetarian or a vegan, please show some support and gratitude to the management so that this wonderful addition to the old “Crossroads Café” will stay a part of it forever.

John Gilbert is a senior majoring in art.

New restaurants snub smaller merchants

Re: “Starbucks and Burger Kin will have to stand test of time” Jan. 6, 2004

The new semester has started and working at the USF Bull Market, I noticed that the new building that they had been working so feverishly on was a Burger King. Now, to their credit, the design and architecture is very attractive and the inside appears to be booming with business.

In fact, Burger King got a sweetheart of a deal: A great location, a new building and plenty of customers going to and from class. However, it greatly saddens me that Mia’s Stand was removed to make room. Those who knew Mia know she was one of the sweetest ladies on campus. She knew many of the students, teachers and workers who lined up to buy drinks, baked pretzels and other goodies. Some days she would fix specialty dishes like the Korean dish Bulgogi (steak with rice and veggies) that often sold out in 45 minutes or less. Many of the eateries on campus have been outsourced to local and national chains that ensure profitability due to name brand, but at a loss to individual eateries whose uniqueness and friendliness kept people coming back due to good food and service.

It benefits the eateries that offer both a mix of the new and the old dishes, it benefits students, teachers and workers to eat well for a low cost, and it benefits people to experience something different from what they are used to. Mia’s was unique and original. If people wanted Burger King, they could drive five minutes down the street to get something to eat.

Furthermore, if people wanted Starbucks, they could walk five minutes down the street and across the Perkins parking lot to get their coffee or specialty drink. Were the demand high enough, people could urge Parking Services to include a stop near Perkins or Publix if there were concerns about nighttime safety. In the end, I think it would have been better to have kept Mia’s and worked to bring more diverse restaurants and dishes at inexpensive prices to the campus.

Linda Evans is a USF alumni.

Departments need to communicate

I have come up with a new set of words that fit our university’s acronym: “University Services Fail”. Does that sound good and pleasant?

I didn’t think so.

It has been about eight months since I was an active student roaming the campus, but I see one thing never changes.

The departments that I deal with (biology, chemistry, residential services, etc.) seem to fail me somewhere along the line. Today, I had to essentially pay about $800 for a mistake that could’ve cost me only about $75. Why? Because someone at the counselor’s desk at Residence Services told me one thing, while the paperwork filed would obviously tell and make me pay for another.

If I recall, I recited the answer that I heard back and got a nod of agreement. How much that nod causes and fiscally hurts me is just unbelievable to me.

But things will look better. One day in the very near future, this won’t even be a concern of mine, because I will have to worry about passing classes instead of actually dealing with these huge, fundamental things that permit me to live, exist and have the opportunity to attend school here.

However, the problem that seems to exist virtually everywhere I deal with at this school, is essentially riding on the cliché of “One hand doesn’t know what the other one is doing.” Communication between departments is consistently failing. How about sending some good “snail mail” in order to make things hard print and clear? I don’t expect to have to call departments for approval to register for coursework every time a semester rolls around. I’ve been at USF since August 2001. Isn’t it about time that these fundamental, departmental things started getting easier for me around here?

With a look around campus, it looks like USF is building to make things better. But how about building two things that are a little more internal to make things better. Character and responsibility are key ingredients to a successful organization.

Don’t get me wrong. I love my classes. I love the professors I’ve dealt with. I love my fellow students. But when it comes to various office staffs, I wish I could’ve had a better experience. But Ill keep on moving and trying to make sure that I can make it as easy on myself as possible. At least that will be one of us making that ease possible.

Jared Schaeffer is a senior majoring in biomedical sciences.