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MIT student blogger Snively '11

Dining by Snively '11

As it stands now

This is another one of those entries that’s going to make admissions cringe when they see the title. Dining is the current hot topic at MIT for a variety of reasons, none of which I’m going to touch. The long and short of it is that there are very few people on campus who can grasp exactly what’s going on right now and it’s simply not responsible of me to talk about such a big issue when it’s currently in a state of development.

What I will discuss is how the current dining system at MIT operates. That was one of my biggest questions about MIT, it didn’t seem to be explained well in any of the material and it also seemed like a really critical issue. Probably my sketchiest prefrosh moment was due to a lack of dining understanding (that’s a story for a later entry, or for Laura to write about). To fix this issue, I present to you everything you need to know about dining (for now!).


There are six main options for getting food at MIT (more specifically, dinner), and they are:

1) House Dining Membership
2) Dining Dollars
3) Tech Cash
4) Cook!
5) Cash
6) Fraternities, Sororities, and Independent Living Groups

Straight down, here we go:

1) House Dining Membership
House Dining Membership (HDM) is about as close to a traditional dining program as you can get at MIT. A $300 dollar fee at the beginning of the semester goes towards all of your dinner purchases over the semester BUT . . . this does not mean free meals. HDM gives you 50% off all of your dinners, so you still have to pay, just not as much.

There are 5 dorms that have dining halls where HDM is accepted:
1) Baker
2) McCormick
3) Next
4) Simmons
5) Ashdown

If you live in any of these dorms, you are AUTOMATICALLY enrolled in the House Dining Membership and must participate in it.

Generally, the dorms are open for dinner every night when there’s school the next day (meaning no dinner on Fridays but there is dinner on Sundays).

PROS
If you eat more than $600 worth of dinner, you’re getting a half price discount on everything you eat!

CONS
Most people, realistically, don’t eat that much food. You essentially have to eat in the dining halls every night. People will argue with me about this, and of course there are exceptions, but it’s difficult to eat enough food to make this worth it. Especially when you factor in trips to Boston restaurants (a must) and various clubs and activities that will give you food. Also, walking to another dorm for food is an inconvenience, especially since dorms are kind of spread out (at least enough to be annoying). It feels weird not eating in your own home, surrounded by people you don’t know. Realistically, it doesn’t happen as often as MIT would hope.

2) Dining Dollars
Dining Dollars is money you can load directly onto your student ID card. The Dining Dollars account can only be used in all dining halls, restaurants, food courts, cafes on campus, card reader-equipped vending machines and for late night pizza delivery from Dominos.

PROS
You know exactly how much money you’re spending on food. You also won’t be tempted to spend money from your ID card on anything but food. A good way for parents to budget money just for food for you. It’s also very easy for parents to load Dining Dollars into an account for you!

CONS
It’s an unnecessary division of funds unless you really don’t trust yourself to allot money for food.

3) TechCash
TechCash essentially turns your student ID into an on-campus debit card. Money on your TechCash account can be spent not only on food, but also on anything in La Verde’s (the student convenience store in the student center), a hardware store down the street, random fundraisers you see in Lobby 10, yearbooks, class hoodies, the MIT bookstore, haircuts in the student center, and all sorts of other cool services.

PROS
You don’t have to carry a bunch of cash around with you. Your ID card is all you need for most things you’ll be buying on campus. The money comes from your student account if you’d like, making it a popular option for loans. Loans that cover books, food, and various other amenities often go into TechCash because it’s designed to let you purchase things that will help you in college. It’s also very easy for parents to load a TechCash account for you!

CONS
It’s not accepted everywhere. Sometimes you’ll need cash or debit cards, especially for trips into Boston. It can also be a pain if you don’t carry cash and rely fully on TechCash.

4) Cook!
A lot of the dorms without dining halls have kitchens. More specifically I believe Burton-Conner, East Campus, Random Hall, Senior House, and Bexley all have kitchens. Also, as mentioned in the comments below, apparently all dorms have some type of kitchen access if you’re interested in cooking. A lot of students choose to live in these dorms in large part because of the kitchens and the freedom to cook what they want without being restricted to what the school feeds them.

PROS
How you eat is up to you. You can eat what you want, when you want. There is a grocery store with almost everything you need just down the street and there are normally plenty of kitchens or plenty of space for anybody who’d like to cook. Dorms are often filled with the delicious smells of cinnamon buns, cookies, and soup.

CONS
A lot of college students (ME!) don’t know how or have no interest in cooking. Cooking requires all of your own kitchen supplies and requires you to buy food at the grocery store (the one most frequented does NOT take TechCash). Cooking takes time and effort, something many people don’t have the time or desire to do.

5) Cash
Buy food on campus or in Boston with cash. Everybody takes cash!

PROS
Everybody takes cash so you have access to everything!

CONS
Parents can’t fill up your cash! Also, carrying cash requires a wallet that can hold cash. You can also run out or not have enough. Loans don’t really filter into cash, so any cash you spend is probably your own.

6) Fraternities, Sororities, and Independent Living Groups
I don’t know a lot about the FSILG dining options, but there appear to be a lot of people willing to answer questions about it in the comments. The gist of it is that many FSILGs offer dining plans if you choose to eat at their houses. Plans vary from house to house, so independent research would probably be the way to go, or just ask for help in the comments.


NON-DINNER MEALS
Since dining halls are dinner-only, most students will eat breakfast either at the student center, various food trucks or cafes, even at Sunny’s Diner down the street. I’ll leave lunch discussion for another entry (just because there’s so much).

BOTTOM LINE
You want my advice? Ok, not just my advice, but also the advice of the people I live with and also many many many people I’ve interacted with that are members of House Dining. What’s the advice?

Avoid the House Dining Membership, avoid Dining Dollars, go with either cooking, TechCash, or cash, whichever you’re more comfortable with. A lot of people who live in dorms that are forced into paying the $300 for House Dining are unhappy with the automatic membership because it restricts them to a dining hall every evening instead of giving them the freedom to eat elsewhere. Half the point of MIT is that it’s a great opportunity to experience as much as you can, including eating in as many places as you can.

Dining Dollars is just an unnecessary restriction on an otherwise normal TechCash account. Anybody with a reasonable amount of self control would be better off with just TechCash, spending it only on food. It’s there to bail you out if you need it (in case you need something other than food) but is available for food as well. Also, I don’t know a single person who uses Dining Dollars (they probably exist though, just not en mass).

Cooking is the heart and soul of many dorms here. BUT! You don’t have to know how to cook to live in a dorm with kitchens. I live in Burton-Conner, a dorm with 6+ kitchens on each of its 9 floors. I can’t cook. At all. I love Burton-Conner! I eat at the student center, I eat delivery, I eat in Boston, and sometimes I’ll microwave some soup or some hot dogs. Food just isn’t an issue, so no worries.

MIT will likely get angry at me for suggesting that you avoid their dining memberships. I’m sorry MIT, just sharing what I feel the most useful and most common sentiments are. The fact that a lot of people are unhappy with House Dining and try to avoid it is kind of a problem, which is why there is currently a ton of controversy on campus about the dining program.

Parents seem to be concerned that there isn’t a central dining hall or that kids don’t have access to food (remember point number 1 in this entry?). Lack of central dining concerns a lot of students too. As I said earlier, having to travel to various dining halls in various dorms is kind of an inconvenience.

At this point, your most economic and perhaps healthiest option is to purchase or cook your own food with your own money. That’s my suggestion, take it or leave it.

That’s dining! Comment with questions, but I’d like to request that no discussion of current on-campus dining negotiations occur in the comments. Nothing is concrete or finalized enough to publish. When everything is resolved, somebody will publish the result.

UPDATE
> Ok, I revised some things and mentioned that all dorms have some type of kitchen or cooking facilities (I didn’t actually know this).

> I also fixed the Dining Dollars mistake that Laura mentioned (again, I didn’t know this).

> I mentioned lunch but don’t really want to get into it because this was mostly to talk about dining plans and dinner.

> Again, “Preferred Dining” does not actually exist. It’s now called “House Dining Membership,” but they’re essentially the same thing. If you read comments referring to “Preferred Dining” then they are actually talking about “House Dining Membership.”

>I mentioned FSILGS but don’t know enough about the individual house plans to comprehensively talk about them so questions will have to be answered in the comments.

47 responses to “Dining”

  1. Oasis '11 says:

    New House has kitchens spread out amongst the dorm. Next House has a big communal kitchen in its basement.

    I personally just eat in outside food places (small cafes, restaurants) around the campus. It costs about $7 per night, and there’s enough to not get too repetitive.

    I’ll write about that before I graduate haha. =p

  2. fidel says:

    Wouldnt it be nice if MIT actually built a central dining hall, like the Annenberg Hall at Harvard, but more in keeping with the architecture at MIt?

  3. Becca '12 says:

    New House has full kitchens too.

  4. debbie '11 says:

    as much as you are strongly opposed to the dining at MIT, I would have the say that preferred dining, though a bit different from other dining systems at other colleges is not the worst thing in the world. After having been on preferred dining for about 1.5 years, I really don’t have much to complain about. I mean, with preferred dining I can really get as much food as I would like (stock up on next days’ breakfast or lunches?) for half price and can store the food in my fridges.

    Dining does offer a lot of fruit/vegetables/salads/desserts and really isn’t offered anywhere else on campus for such a lowered price. Yes, I’ll admit it may be counterproductive to have already paid the fee and then get the discount, but perhaps Dining had already developed this plan so students would have more incentive to eat at dining – after all it does cost a lot to maintain the dining halls.

    Lastly, the nice thing is that you with preferred dining you get access to all of dining halls – and if you want to try some ‘special of the day’ that is specifically made at another dorm’s dining hall, it’s easily accessible and you can go there easily.

    Now I’m not saying the preferred dining is the solution to everything on campus – there are things I would like to have changed about it, but it’s also not the biggest deal – and you dont necessarily need a ‘NEED TO AVOID’ attitude towards it.

  5. Photon says:

    I’ll echo Paul and say that eating at FSILGs is a great cheap way to get food. I know some ILGs charge about $100 per term for as much food as you can eat, and only require cooking or cleaning once a week in addition to the meal fee. (Do the math, it’s a great deal.)

    Some FSILGs are pretty close to campus (10-minute walk) and have shuttles that drop off right at their doors.

    I’ve eaten at Simmons once and the food was as bad as at any other college. I’ve cooked in EC, Senior Haus, Random, and Burton-Conner at let me tell you, the food was far superior to what was made in the dining hall. MIT loses money on the dining hall meal plans, and it boggles my mind why they still pour money into a money-losing enterprise.

    MIT’s the best at what it does because it doesn’t do things like other universities. Learn a great new life skill and meet new people: cook for yourself in your dorm or head across the river or the street to an FSILG that’ll feed you! (You don’t even have to rush.)

  6. Sondy says:

    I’ll echo some earlier posts about FSILGs: pika has a home-cooked dinner EVERY NIGHT and it’s FREE the first term you join our meal plan! Cook or clean once (or twice) a week and you can pretty much eat as much food as you want. We’re about a five-minute walk from Simmons and from previous comments, it sounds like the food’s a bit better than what comes forth from the main Simmons kitchen.

    (I swear I’ll finish my post about ILGs one of these days… argh…)

  7. Anonymous says:

    @Akash

    If you’ve got a 730 on your math level 2 and want to give it again sometime, MIT would probably consider you as paranoid. A perfect score doesn’t mean admission into MIT, and your score (730) pretty much seems to represent the score range that MIT looks at.

  8. kk says:

    Hey Snively,
    Nice post, seriously it worries cause I am a big foodie. Well a question, I happen to be a vegetarian (eggs are an exception). Does any dining hall offer vegetarian food, or better what’s the best option for me? Thanks

  9. Anonymous says:

    I believe all dining halls offer vegetarian options daily (that, more importantly, are not of lesser quality than non-vegetarian dishes).

  10. Anonymous says:

    What do you do with your toothbrush?

    I mean, you can’t leave it in a holder in the bathroom like at home. Do you keep it on your desk?

    This is important stuff!

  11. '12 says:

    @Anon: Yeah Ashdown is $600 per semester, but that pays for every meal in the term, so it’s not a 50% discount. The upside of that is not having to pay when you go in, but the downside is that you have to eat every single meal to break even. The only way to profit from the plan is to eat an abnormal amount of food (more than $8 worth per meal), which is possible due to the All You Care To Eat plan that only Ashdown currently has.

  12. '12 says:

    Great way to handle a sensitive topic. I’ll admit I was worried when I saw the title, but it’s a topic that needs to be covered, and I’m glad you did.

    So, I live in EC and cook my own food, and I can’t recommend this options more strongly! Seriously, cooking is easy to learn guys! I couldn’t make toast without setting the house on fire before I came here, but now I’m at least semi-competent in the kitchen, and cooking with friends makes it easy and fun.

    Moral of the story, don’t let the lack of dining halls scare you, and don’t worry about starving. Worst case, survive off of all the free food lying around this place smile

  13. Ngozi '13 says:

    Is it really bad that Dining is a huge factor for me? Like, yeah, MIT’s the best school in the country, and of course you guys don’t starve for 4 years, but…Food and how I eat it is very important to me. smile

    Do any of you guys ever wish for the “traditional” dining system?

  14. Nicole '10 says:

    First off, Snively – you left out MacGregor… we have kitchens too; they’re not exactly traditional, since they’re in our hallways, but we have sinks, stovetops, cupboards, and a full-size refrigerator in each suite of six people… plus one full oven for the entry to share.

    @kk – Don’t worry, it is not hard to be vegetarian at MIT… I am vegetarian and I’ve met quite a few others (and one vegan – she lives in EC and cooks everything she eats herself). The dining halls always do have vegetarian options, but I prefer to live in a dorm w/ a kitchen and just make whatever I want… granted, I’m kind of boring and ‘whatever I want’ is almost always pasta, mac&cheese;, rice, or something like that. Our social chairs in c-entry have also been pretty good about trying to include vegetarian options for our study breaks.

    @Anonymous – yes, actually, I do keep my toothbrush on my desk, but that’s because its electric and it needs to be plugged in. At least in MacG, and probably a lot of other dorms, you will have a cubby in the bathroom though where you can leave most of your stuff. And if you live in Simmons, you can probably just leave your toothbrush in the bathroom. ^_^

    I personally am not a big fan of the dining program, but I do know people who enjoy it and use it regularly – if you live in a dorm that has a dining hall and you don’t care about cost (ie. your parents or financial aid are covering your food) it can be a good way to meet people, I guess. I ate in Baker during finals week last spring with a group of my friends, and it was kind of nice – but not something that could really happen all the time, since people’s schedules are so different throughout the semester.

  15. Akash says:

    nice piece of advice Snively.
    i just want to know wheather a score of 780 in physics and 730 in math II alright? anyways i’m giving the math II again in JAN 09.

  16. Paul says:

    Good summary of dining options, Snively.

    It’s probably worth mentioning that most of MIT’s fraternities, sororities, and independent living groups (FSILGs) have their own traditions when it comes to eating. At my fraternity, we have a professional chef to cook dinner for the whole house five nights a week. We also buy communal supplies for make-your-own breakfast and lunch, and we have a fully-stocked kitchen for the culinarily-talented brothers.

    Most FSILGs have similar arrangements, but not necessarily all of them. I do know that there are a couple of FSILGs where one or two members cook for the entire house a few nights a week.

  17. Ilyanep says:

    Thanks for the post Snively.

    I obviously don’t have too much experience with college campus dining, so I hope my questions aren’t too dumb.

    1) Everyone keeps mentioning dinner. What about lunch/breakfast? I assume same options, what do you find yourself doing for these oh so important meals?
    2) How does dining with something like TechCash [i.e. in the on-campus cafes, dining halls, etc.] tend to work out financially? I assume since people say you don’t eat $600 worth of dinner in a semester, it’s less than that, also that different people eat different amounts.

  18. Ben says:

    That’s rather complex system for food.

    Is food being serve all day? Personally, I have a rather strange tendency to eat only afterI finish doing things [or a given train of thought], which translates to a lack of any formal schedule. [lunch at 7pm is rather common]

    -Ben Z

  19. Laura says:

    “If you participate in Dining Dollars you CAN NOT participate in the TechCash program (which I’ll talk about shortly). It’s either Dining Dollars or TechCash.”

    That’s not actually true, you can designate money for either or both.

    And I don’t think it’s fair to advise people to avoid Housing Dining. Avoid the Dining Plan, absolutely. But there’s nothing wrong with House Dining per se, I know lots of people enjoy it. Don’t let your bias for those disgusting Anna’s burrito cloud your judgment. =) On more careful reading it seems that’s what you mean, but I would make a distinction between “House Dining” (eating any meal in a dining hall in a dorm) from the Preferred Dining Plan for clarity’s sake.

  20. Laura says:

    Sorry, one thing I forgot to add: Some people are automatically enrolled in the Dining Plan because they live in a dorm with a dining hall. This is unfortunate, since very few people really like the plan…but it’s important to note that you can’t necessarily avoid it, even if you’d like to. And don’t automatically rule out living in a dining hall dorm just for that reason- its a trade-off that should be carefully considered if it concerns you.

  21. Akash,

    Your scores are quite good: they demonstrate your familiarity with Physics and mathematics.

    Happy New Year

    PHIR MILENGE!

  22. Thankyou for the advice Laura.

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!

  23. '11 says:

    mccormick has 1 or 2 kitchens on every floor too…

  24. Jared '10 says:

    I agree with Debbie – there’s a reason why MIT has the Preferred Dining Plan, and I imagine that if we switched to a different system more closely mirroring other schools, students would find just as much to complain about.

    The nice thing about Preferred Dining is that it really isn’t the most expensive thing in the world, so it doesn’t necessarily tie you down as much as other schools – for example, the local state school some of my friends are at charge $3900 per year for free access to the dining halls for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You are much more ‘tied down’ to eating at the (pretty terrible) school dining hall there (and at many other schools on a similar system) compared to MIT.

    Preferred Dining is a good thing, because MIT students are often on strange eating/sleeping schedules that might not be best accommodated by a traditional breakfast/lunch/dinner hours. Not being heavily tied down to that allows you the freedom to explore other culinary offerings (whether in Boston/Cambridge, or in your local dorm kitchens), but if you still need a quick dinner on the cheap, you can do that at the dining halls.

    Plus, $300 is arguably a drop in the bucket compared to the total cost of MIT for us students. According to the financial aid website, total estimated yearly cost for MIT is $50,100, so the $600 a year you pay for Preferred Dining is roughly 1% of that.

  25. lulu says:

    at this point it wouldn’t affect me, but honestly I do think that our current system, with the combined option of cooking and purchasing prepared food, is ideal. It really prepares you for life after college while still giving you the option of easy access to food in case you don’t have the time.

  26. Snively says:

    @Laura
    So I looked and “Preferred Dining” doesn’t actually exist, it’s technically called “House Dining Membership” so that’s what I tried to call it. That’s what I meant, that the membership is less than ideal, but the actual house dining is quite tasty.

    I don’t have time to address other things right now (power outage, not at my computer) but I’ll answer some questions/address some issues later.

  27. cristen says:

    I feel that your description of the kitchen/dining options was not thorough enough. I think it could use some editing to at least mention the fact that kitchens or parts of kitchens exist in every other dorm (they do!), and it really would be useful for people to know their options outside of dinner.

    I like your pros and cons tho. smile Interesting also to meet someone who has no interest in learning how to cook! :O

  28. Akash says:

    @Navdeep(’13)
    Thanks for the letting me know that.
    and ofcourse…..PHIR MILENGE!

  29. '12 says:

    Just thought I’d put a word in for Random’s kitchens… they’re AWESOME. My hall has community cooking supplies (pans, silverware, plates, cups, mugs, lots of bowls…, etc.) so you *don’t* have to own your own in order to cook. Moreover, we have community flour/sugar/spices/other baking needs, so you can use those for cooking projects (especially if you’re going to share with others in the dorm) or for yourself (in small amounts). Basically, cooking, at least in our kitchens, is even easier than it might sound. Plus we’re right around the corner from Star Market grin

  30. Snively says:

    UPDATE:
    > Ok, I revised some things and mentioned that all dorms have some type of kitchen or cooking facilities (I didn’t actually know this).

    > I also fixed the Dining Dollars mistake that Laura mentioned (again, I didn’t know this).

    > I mentioned lunch but don’t really want to get into it because this was mostly to talk about dining plans and dinner.

    > Again, “Preferred Dining” does not actually exist. It’s now called “House Dining Membership,” but they’re essentially the same thing. If you read comments referring to “Preferred Dining” then they are actually talking about “House Dining Membership.”

    >I mentioned FSILGS but don’t know enough about the individual house plans to comprehensively talk about them so questions will have to be answered in the comments.

  31. Anon says:

    Ashdown/NW35 is `0, I believe.

  32. Just a thought for those concerned about cooking for yourself:

    When I first came to MIT, I could barely operate a microwave, let alone actually cook a meal. I was mildly concerned about food, since my dorm (Random) does not have any sort of cafeteria, but does have great kitchens on every floor that are very conducive to cooking. I was able to pick up cooking pretty quickly, though. Granted, I’m still no Iron Chef, but I can certainly cook a meal that I find tolerable, and I often impress myself with what I’ve learned. Some of what I learned came from cooking with friends, and a lot of it has come from experimentation. I look at cooking as another way of practicing science smile. Although for days when I don’t have the time or energy to cook for myself, there are enough cheap and tasty restaurants in the area that I can order dinner and get something to eat pretty quickly.

  33. Yan says:

    @ Michelle:

    Definitely go with grocery shopping if you’re going to be eating a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, although the quality and variety will indeed be less than what you’re used to. The closest grocery store is Shaw’s, which is an average American supermarket that has a decent produce selection. Granted, I’m from the Midwest so I’m used to fresher and cheaper produce (fruits and vegetables, as well as most food in general, is more expensive in Boston than in most parts of the country. Californians especially seem to have a problem with the fact that avocados can cost $1.59 each). Some people also shop at Harvest, which is a few blocks further north and sells a lot of organic fruit.

    On the bright side, Boston has excellent fruit orchards and you’ll probably get to go on a few fruit-picking trips every year where you can fill giant bags with enough to last you for a few weeks (I recommend studying closed-packed atomic structures for inspiration on ways to pack fruit as compactly as possible). I had the best apples and peaches that I’ve ever tasted in my life at Phil’s Orchards.

    If you’re willing to make subway trips, Boston has weekly farmer’s markets where you can get fresh, local produce at ridiculously cheap prices. I recommend Haymarket, where you can bargain for absurdly low prices (as in a dollar for 20 limes, etc.)

  34. Nicole '10 says:

    @Michelle – there’s also Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods, which are smaller grocery stores that carry a lot more natural foods and fruits and veggies and things… they’re not as close to MIT as Shaw’s, but they’re not ridiculously far away either.

  35. Hi Snively,

    Great post! I’m actually rather worried about food at M.I.T. In Israel we have a lot of very good quality produce (fruit, vegetables etc.) and I hear that the U.S offers both less variety of and lesser quality stuff.

    Which option do you think will allow me the best access to the best quality veggies in the area?

    My diet anxiously awaits your answer! wink
    -Michelle.

    P.S: I’m not a vegeterian. I’m just trying to maintain a pseudo-healthy lifestyle.

  36. Anonymous says:

    Someone should put up a post about the life outside studying, classes and things like that.
    Do MIT kids party? What about alcohol limits and stuff?

  37. Lainers says:

    Yes, all dorms have kitchen access of some sort, with the ones without dining halls (Random, Bexley, EC, Senior House, New House, Burton Conner, MacG) as well as McCormick having more plentiful facilities.
    Other than FSILGs, and I don’t know about Ashdown, breakfast and lunch are the same for everyone on campus – buy stuff at a supermarket or on campus, eat where, when, and how you like.
    The hours that on-campus facilities, especially outside of the student center, are quite limited. I often am looking for dinner at 9 or 10 PM and there is nothing open other then a few places in the student center. Stata, for example, is closed from 3-5 and from 8 on. These sort of hours are especially difficult on people on sports teams that have practice from 5-6 everyday.
    Most if not all dining halls have vegetarian options every night, and one (I believe Baker?) has Kosher and Hallal meals available as well.
    In short, no one’s ever restricted to what MIT feeds them, if they’re willing to go get what they want. Sometimes, though, when your hosed or just brain dead, it’s nice to have food close and available regardless of anything else.

  38. Laura says:

    Ah….well “back in the day” when I was a frosh it was called “Preferred Dining”…I suppose the name has changed since then. Thanks for clearing it up, it was just a bit confusing as I read it.

  39. milena '11 says:

    @ Michelle:

    There *is* actually really good produce to be found in Boston, but you’ll have to pay more for it. I think it’s every Thursday (but don’t take my word for it)… there’s a farmers market at Copley Square and everything is organic and straight from the farm and delicious. But I’m a huge foodie and a bit snobby when it comes to food, and you can find perfectly good produce at the supermarket.

  40. @Yan, Nicole ’10, milena ’11

    Thanks for the info!
    -Michelle.

  41. Reena says:

    That was really informative, especially with all the comments. Thanks!

  42. Sondy says:

    @kk
    A lot of the FSILGs have vegan options; pika has vegan options every night (sometimes completely vegan meals) as well as humanely-treated eggs, dairy, and meat.

    @Michelle
    Some people subscribe to Boston Organics or other CSAs to get regular, quality vegetables delivered to their dorms. Haymarket has quality cheap veggies, while Star and Harvest generally have good vegetables for reasonable costs.

    One way to keep the cost of food down is to find a bunch of friends to cook with regularly, even if it’s just one or two other people. Taking turns cooking and cleaning affords you tasty nutritious food and relaxing time with friends.

  43. Anonymous says:

    Ok, so although this blog is mostly about dining options, I do have a question about money. For the sake of on-the-hand cash, what are the most common/nearest banks and ATMs near the campus?

  44. Deepak says:

    I am MIT applicant fom India,
    I am worried whether I could get pure vegetarian food in MIT or not ( I am not talking about salads grin
    My mail Id is [email protected]
    Can anyone help me out

  45. Anita says:

    Three points:

    1) I decided to try transferring to MIT. I wasn’t admitted freshman year, but it can’t hurt to try again!

    2) I’ve used gas stoves all my life, but my family recently moved into an apartment that only contains electric ones. The new relationship is strained – tolerant, at best.

    3) If accepted into MIT, I will be cooking. So now I am curious; what stoves types do MIT kitchens provide – electric or gas? Oven types?

  46. Deepak says:

    @Anita
    Well if you wish to cook (I hope vegetarian), then we’ll to have a good time ( Ihope, sorry I know you we someday invite me for breakfast, lunch AND dinner

    By the way , which college are you presently in (I am High School graduate(’08) with a gap year)applying for ’09

    All the best for your selection!!!!!!!!!!

  47. Think Money says:

    As above – its all about the vegatarian food!