Students struggle to find time for lunch on campus


Eating is not cheap, especially on college campuses. Statistics published by the USDA show college students spend an average $42 to $55 a week on food. 

With college tuition increasing by 213%  since 1987, students are finding it harder to pay for things like food.  The current schedule also leaves a small window of time for Southern Miss students to grab a bite to eat before heading to the next class. 

“It’s terrible that everyone has the same lunch period, so there’s not really a time to do what you need before the next class,”  Rhianna Crawford, a sophomore general education major, said.

Crawford said the tight schedule, combined with the fact she commutes to school every day, means there is not much time to get lunch. Instead, she brings a snack or ends up braving the lines for a meal. 

“I have time, but the lines are so long at every dining place that I just don’t bother with lunch,” sophomore film major Jaden Pines said. 

“Between eating lunch and getting to class on time, I choose getting to class because I would rather not be late, which is why I bring a snack along to play it safe,” Pines said. 

Statistics published by HSBC Bank show college students spend an average of $4,097 every year when eating out and anywhere from $630 to $1,260 on food to eat in between classes or at the dorms. 

Not every student is shorthanded on time to get lunch, such as freshman computer science major Luke Baker.  Baker said his current schedule finds him taking most of his classes in the morning, which leaves ample time to get lunch when he’s finished for the day. 

“The best way for students to ensure they eat is to plan their schedule. Figuring out which times are best for eating before or after classes will ensure they’re not hungry or in a rush to find something before their next class,” Baker said.

An article published by UC Berkeley provides various tips for students with regards to not only eating on time, but also healthy.  Among the tips it describes, one of them is putting reminders in a calendar which serve as an indicator to eat something at a certain point and time in the day. 

The article also advises students who eat out to choose healthy options and keep in mind portion sizes.