It’s 11:15am on a Thursday in Tech, and you have class at 12:20pm in University Hall. This means you’ll be grabbing lunch and traversing the campus in about an hour. Similar to choosing a dorm or classes here at Northwestern, you have many options for choosing your dining hall for lunch. Will Plex have the shortest line? Are there omelets at Sargent or Allison today? Is Shirley making sandwiches in Elder this afternoon? Where’s the hot cookie bar? Thankfully, regardless of which of the six dining halls you choose on your walk down to class, you won’t be disappointed. All of our dining halls are located inside dorms, and no student is ever further than ~5 minute walk away from a dining hall. The halls vary in size and offerings, like the dorms themselves, and often have a great mix of freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and professors. Food is unlimited once you enter the dining halls, and you have several choices when it comes to meal plans. As a first year, there are the WildCat Weekly 13, WildCat Weekly 14, and Unlimited options. “Unlimited” means that you can swipe in to any dining hall at any time for as little or as much time as you want. This option is handy if you’re a big coffee drinker or definitely know that you’re going to want three (or more) meals a day because you can run in and out of dining halls just to grab a drink or a quick snack before classes. The weekly plans also allow you to run in and out of dining halls to grab snacks or a drink, but do require a little more planning. With these plans, you get either 13 or 14 meals per week. This may not seem like a lot, but often times my freshman year I found it hard to even use all of my 13 meals. When it comes to free food at information sessions or campus events, and eating at all of the amazing restaurants in downtown Evanston, as well as the smaller convenient stores (C-Stores) located around campus, those 13 or 14 meals a week can often be more than enough. Regardless of what plan you choose, your account will also have something called “points.” These points are treated like cash, and can be used in dining halls or in the C-Stores across campus.
ANYWAY, for this particular afternoon, you decide on Foster Walker Complex West (Plex West). Plex West is right in the middle of campus, so it’s a perfect stop halfway through your walk to the 12:20pm class in University Hall. Also, it’s burrito day! Certain dining halls are known for their weekly traditions, and Plex West is one of them. Mondays and Thursdays they wrap up some of the best burritos I’ve seen throughout my time at NU. The lines are quick, location is prime, and food is delicious. You finish up your meal, say goodbye to the friends you bumped into, and head out of the door at 12:15pm to arrive at your class right on time.

–Taylor Billings

photo source: NU Dining Instagram.

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