LETTER: In support of dining halls opening earlier on gamedays

The Rutgers University Student Assembly is working with administration and other student organizations to create a campus culture of safer drinking habits. This initiative involves opening a dining hall on each side of the river earlier on game days with a noon kickoff.

Students that wake up early and excited for the tailgates of the noon home football games start their celebrations substantially earlier than the dining halls open for brunch. Given that games happen on Saturdays, the dining halls open at 9:30 a.m., the same time that most tailgates start. On top of that, numerous bars around campus open as early as 8:30 a.m. for people to start drinking before the tailgates get underway.

When dining halls are the primary and sometimes only source of food for students, they must answer the call to properly provide students with a meal before they consume alcohol. This is a safety measure that can lower the risk of alcohol poisoning and students not being able to get into the game.

Big Ten Schools such as the University of Michigan recognized this drinking problem, and also responded by opening their dining hall early. Therefore, the Rutgers University Student Assembly, is partnering with Rutgers Dining Services and Rutgers Athletics to support the initiative of opening the Brower and Busch dining halls at 8:30 a.m. on the Saturdays where kickoff is at noon. It is the goal of this partnership to ensure that students who participate in tailgates are healthier, more aware, and safer when they show their Scarlet pride at High Point Solutions Stadium.

Rachel Brown is the Athletic Affairs Chair of the Rutgers University Student Assembly (RUSA), Joe Charette is the director of Rutgers University Dining Services and Tyrus Jackson is the University Affairs Chair of the Rutgers University Student Assembly (RUSA).

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