Ithaca College will now enable the use of its Bomber Bucks declining balance funds by students not on meal plans. The decision will enable all students to now use Bomber Bucks to purchase food and other items on campus.
As reported by The Ithacan, Bomber Bucks are funds loaded onto student ID cards that can be used for tax-free, on-campus purchases at participating merchants.
Bomber Bucks are available to load onto student accounts via CBORD's GET platform, and Ithaca College Dining Services ran a promotion for the addition of Bomber Bucks to student accounts from November 1 to November 15 that offered a 10% increase on the transaction. For example if a student loaded $50, Dining Services would put $55 in Bomber Bucks onto the student’s account.
According to university officials, Dining Services made the change to try and make retail dining more convenient for students. In the past, loading extra Bomber Bucks onto a student ID online was impossible, and the promotion is meant to help show students that the process is now quite simple and easy, said Yan Salcedo, assistant director of dining administration, in a statement to The Ithacan.
“Everything we are trying right now is more like a pilot program,” Salcedo said. “We are still trying to figure out what works and what changes will stick and what students prefer. Our main goal is to make things easier for students.”
Ithaca also recently transitioned to in-house dining services after the college ended a 20-year partnership with previous food-service provider, Sodexo. The transition has brought a number of changes for student meal plans, including a change to the dining dollar name from Bonus Bucks to Bomber Bucks.
Currently, students at Ithaca College have two meal plan options. Students can opt for the commuter meal plan that includes five meal swipes per week and $600 in Bomber Bucks, or the resident meal plan, which includes unlimited meal swipes, $230 in Bomber Bucks and three guest meals per semester.
During the promotion, $29,700 were added to student accounts as Bomber Bucks, said Rebecca Sexton, assistant director of Dining Services. According to Sexton, because of the 10% increase an additional $2,970 was added to student accounts, resulting in $32,670 in Bomber Bucks added across the student body. There were 504 total transactions with 60 of them on accounts of students not currently on meal plans.