written by Elaina Bonora, BUDS Editorial Intern
Binghamton University Dining Services (BUDS) has always been committed to providing students with a great dining experience, and this semester is no different. As the Binghamton University community continues to progress into the fall semester, BUDS was interested in hearing what students had to say. While dining in The MarketPlace and the four Resident Dining halls, students provided comments about dining and their experiences so far.
When it comes to college, all teenagers have a picture in their mind of what they think it will be like; from living in a dorm room, to sitting in a lecture hall, and even making friends – students come to campus with certain hopes and expectations. However, it is often the case, that what students desire most is simply for their university to feel like a home. In speaking with students, many commented on how Dining Services helped to form that sense of community and that at-home feeling that they had hoped for.
“I really love the fact that there is a lot more seating in the dining halls than there had been last year. It really feels like what I expected college to be like: more of a community. Binghamton finally feels like home.” - Maddi, Sophomore, Mountain View Resident
“I really like how everyone hangs out [at The MarketPlace]. You are able to just hang out and spend time with your friends in between classes, and it's a nice break from classwork.” - Freshman, CIW Resident
“My favorite dining hall is definitely CIW Dining Hall because of how small it is, so I get to see a lot of the same faces every day. It helps me to feel more connected and really makes Binghamton feel like its own community.” - Najah, Freshman, CIW Resident
The large variety of dining options available on campus gives students the opportunity to find their own individual dining niche; from the bagel sandwiches at Einstein Bros. Bagels, to the Indian food served at Royal Indian in The Marketplace, there are plenty of choices to fit each student’s personal preferences. So, it was no surprise that when asked about their dining favorites on campus, students were eager to share their opinions.
“I really love the sandwich station in the CIW Dining Hall! There are so many options and the servers are always very generous with toppings.” - Eric, Freshman, Dickinson Resident
“I like how there are a lot of different places for me to eat. Hinman Dining Hall is definitely my favorite though; it’s in close proximity to both Lecture Hall and Classroom Wing where most of my classes are.” - Freshman, CIW Resident
“I really like the salad station; I like that I can make my own salad and there are so many different cheese and lettuce options. There is a huge variety, from arugula to spinach - they really have it all.” - Bella, Freshman, Dickinson Resident
“The food options at [Nite Owl] are so fun and I always miss them during Summer and Winter break. Nothing beats mac and cheese bites on a Friday night!” - Anna, Junior, Off-Campus
BUDS strives to provide exceptional customer service, making dining experiences on campus enjoyable for students. When speaking to students about what makes their dining experiences memorable, many spoke of the positive interactions that they have with our employees and the impact that it can have on their day.
“The staff plays a big part in what makes dining on campus such a great experience. I’m always greeted with a smile and a ‘Good Morning’ each day!” - Najah, Freshman, College in The Woods Resident
“I like the fact that I am able to form a relationship with the staff members that I see every day. The servers at the sandwich station are super funny and it feels very comforting to have staff remember me by name.” - Bella, Freshman, Dickinson Resident
“The staff is incredible and make it feel like a community. They really are what makes Binghamton more than just a place to get an education.” - Dan, Sophomore, Mountain View Resident
For students, the start of a new semester is full of possibilities; students come to campus with a new set of academic and extracurricular goals they plan to accomplish throughout the term. BUDS wanted to know if students had any specific dining “goals” - whether it be checking out new serving stations at their favorite dining hall or trying every item on the Chick-N-Bap menu, we wanted to hear from students what they are most looking forward to while on campus.
“Hinman’s renovated dining hall has so many vegan options that I want to try. I’ve never really had the opportunity to try vegan-based dishes and am grateful I will be able to do so while at school.” - Maddi, Sophomore, Mountain View Resident
“I really want to try the smoothies at Red Mango; I have yet to do so, but it is definitely at the top of my dining bucket list.” - Dan, Sophomore, Mountain View Resident
“A lot of the upperclassmen are always talking about Cupcake Wednesday, so I'm very excited to get to partake in that each week. I’m really hoping there will be a red velvet cupcake sometime this semester!” - Kennidy, Freshman, CIW Resident
“My goal for this semester is to attend as many special events as possible; last year, there was a Nod to Nostalgia event and it was so cool to get to have some of the foods I had when I was younger; it really did make me feel like a kid again, instead of a college student.”- Senior, Off-Campus
Hearing from students about their first-hand dining experiences provides BUDS with the opportunity to ensure quality customer service across all of our locations. We’re appreciative of the feedback provided by the students interviewed above, and look forward to continuing to serve the Binghamton University community!