As parched football fans may have noticed, Michigan Stadium
concession stands have stopped accepting students’ Entre Plus at
football games this season.
Engineering sophomore Lisa Gossman said she found out about the
change when she tried to buy a bottle of water at Saturday’s game
against Houston. “I ended up not buying water and leaving after the
first half,” she said. She said her inability to buy a drink
contributed to her leaving the game.
“I was really thirsty. It was so hot and you just want
LSA senior Jared Freer said he had no idea about the change and
felt that students should have been notified in advance. “Not
telling anyone, that’s pretty shady,” he said. “If they’re going to
take something like that away, they should tell us.”
Spokesman Alan Levy said University Housing Department decided
to end the Entr�e Plus program at the Big House after the
end of last year’s football season.
He said the program was cancelled after it failed in its first
year to recoup operating costs of renting equipment, installing
data lines and other costs during the seven-game football season
last year. Only the Big House is affected by this – Entre Plus is
still accepted everywhere else it was accepted before.
Students with Entre Plus points can use their Mcards to buy food
in residence halls and in eateries such as those in the Michigan
Union and League.
Michigan Student Assembly President Angela Galardi said she
attended a meeting about the program last Friday with University
Housing Business Manager Larry Durst and Residence Hall Association
President Amy Keller.
“The cost of the machines made it hard to make a profit,”
Galardi said. “It had a lot to do with budget cuts.”
Levy said he was not sure if efforts had been made to
communicate the changes to the student body. The Entre Plus screen
of the University Housing website reflects the changes.
Being able to use Entre Plus in the stadium meant students
didn’t have to carry cash into football games, Freer said. “It’s
definitely a convenience for students.”
LSA freshman Ben Lazarus said he didn’t mind not being able to
use Entre Plus in the stadium. He said he would rather have cheaper
concessions. “It may be better if they just lowered the prices
overall – that would be more convenient than Entre Plus.”
Galardi said the program, which originated in MSA during the
2001-2002 school year and was implemented in the fall of 2002, was
a pilot program and many MSA representatives did not realize the
extra work that needed to go into maintaining it. “When they took
it away, I think it took people by surprise,” she said.
Galardi vowed continued MSA efforts to alter and revitalize the
program, mentioning two possible changes that could make the
program viable – asking stadium vendors to rent the necessary
equipment, rather than forcing University Housing to absorb the
costs, or scaling the program back to smaller sports venues such as
Yost Ice Arena. Levy said Housing would be amenable to either
“From MSA’s point of view, we’re upset that it didn’t work out
and we’re going to try to find another way that it could work,”