MSU Dining Services to streamline meal plans and increase Dawg Dollars usage in the upcoming fall semester

Mississippi State University, in collaboration with MSU Dining Services partner Aramark, is enhancing the variety of meal options available on campus. (Photo by Megan Bean)

“When considering the dining experience for our students, our collaboration with Aramark has brought forward innovative ideas to enhance our existing program and establish a more adaptable and accessible dining program for students,” stated Regina Hyatt, Vice President for Student Affairs. “Over the next five years, we anticipate significant changes to the MSU dining experience, introducing new dining concepts, venues, and technologies that will enhance student satisfaction and expand the range of options available to our students and the MSU community.”

Commencing this fall, there will be a shift from a fully block meal structure to a weekly meal format in meal plans. This change will also introduce new block meal options and Dawg Dollar alternatives. Block meals can be used at various dining locations throughout the academic year and, from fall 2025 onwards, at new dining facilities such as Azalea Hall and the revamped Perry Hall. Additionally, they can serve as a daily meal equivalency at retail locations starting this fall. Students will be able to select from a range of meal plan options: Weekly 21, Weekly 14, Weekly 7, Block 60, Block 30, or a $200 Flex Plan. All first-year residential students are required to opt for either the Weekly 21 or Weekly 14 plan.

At present, students have the option to use a block meal as a meal equivalency valued at $6.58, including tax, for a single meal during specific time frames. With the implementation of the new meal plans, this meal equivalency feature will be accessible at any time and at all participating locations, with the value increased to $8.

The Flex dollars will be rebranded “Dawg Dollars” in the revamped dining plan, expanding their usability to certain on-campus locations, including the Barnes & Noble Café, sponsored food trucks, concession stands at sports events, laundry machines, and vending machines. Full-time first-year students at the Starkville campus are mandated to have $300 in Dawg Dollars per semester starting August, with the funds carrying over each semester and being refunded upon graduation if unused.

Dawg Dollars logo

By fall 2025, all full-time undergraduates under 25 years of age at the Starkville campus will be required to maintain $300 in Dawg Dollars per semester.

Following the commencement in May, MSU Dining Services will introduce food trucks at multiple locations across campus, accepting Dawg Dollars. The State Fountain Bakery facility will temporarily serve as a “Perry-to-Go” spot for students to utilize block meals. Subway and Bento Sushi will relocate to the former MSU Florist site this fall.

Construction is underway for Azalea Hall, a new residence hall costing close to $100 million, intended to serve as a central hub for campus dining and community activities. It will feature new dining options, including pizza and Mediterranean stations, a ghost kitchen offering various culinary choices, food lockers for convenient pickup, and a Maroon Market.

For additional information on MSU Dining Services, visit www.dining.msstate.edu.

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