Dining closure means promise, not inconvience

Editorial Board

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A quick drive around campus will tell you one thing: Western Illinois

University’s Master Plan is in full swing.

Students returning to Macomb this weekend will undoubtedly encounter construction in everything they do, whether they are moving into their North Quad residence halls or traipsing through the heart of campus. And honestly, it’s about time. Western’s aging buildings and crumbling infrastructure need plenty of improvement, and it’s great to see physical evidence that the University’s long-discussed and finally-funded plans

are coming to fruition.

However, one part of the plan might take the joy out of new improvements for some students living on the south side of campus.

As a result of the recent — and expensive — Corbin and Olson renovations, University Housing and Dining Services has decided to close the cafeteria that used to serve Lincoln, Washington and Grote halls.

In hopes of saving some maintenance and operation costs, the University has asked students to either select from expanded South Quad C-store offerings or travel the nearly half-mile distance to Corbin and Olson.

Of course, this situation is not ideal. Even with more choices available in the C-store, the offerings will quickly lose their appeal. Having to make the

journey to Corbin and Olson will undoubtedly get old, too, especially in impending winter weather.

But guess what? The University knows.

Housing administrators know that it’s a long way to go. They know that eating from a C-store for every meal isn’t the best. They also know that some students are not happy — especially those who might have certain

physical impairments that make going long distances difficult.

But in the end, the inconvenience will be worth it.

Not only will the closure keep costs down for students — since they would most likely foot the bill for another new dining center — the money that would be used for the South Quad cafeteria can go to other projects that

will continue to enhance both the University’s appearance and efficiency.

And isn’t that what we want? When you graduate, the piece of paper that displays both your name and Western’s name should mean something, and

part of obtaining that significance includes having gone to a school with quality facilities.

Certainly, that takes a little sacrifice and a lot of patience. And still, it’s not like Western is going to leave the students out to dry. GoWest will add

more buses for students who don’t want to walk to Corbin/Olson or any other eating establishment on campus.

Additionally, the WC hopes the University will continue to look for ways to ease the effects on students during this transitional construction period.

Clearly, this semester won’t be easy, but hang in there, Western. You’ll be glad you did.