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University of Minnesota to refund students for lack of food in dining halls

Lunchables and pizza: University of Minnesota students frustrated by cafeteria options
Lunchables and pizza: University of Minnesota students frustrated by cafeteria options 02:05

MINNEAPOLIS – Following outrage over the lack of food being served in some University of Minnesota dining halls during the first weeks of the fall semester, some students can expect to get some of their money back.

University officials announced Tuesday that every student who lives in campus residence halls and pays for a food plan will be given a 50-percent credit for September's dining charges. 

Officials cite "ongoing staffing shortages" for the substandard dining experiences so far this school year.

WCCO reported last week on the ongoing situation at Middlebrook Hall on the U's west bank campus in Minneapolis, where students told us they were finding few food choices, especially a lack of healthy options.

A stack of Lunchables offered to students at Middlebrook Hall Parents of Class of 2026 / Facebook

"We've been getting Lunchables and pizza, that's about it," said Donovan Verdi, a freshman living at Middlebrook.

Students will see the credit applied to their accounts during the first week of October. For those who already paid in full for the semester, the money will be refunded via direct deposit or check.

"The University and its dining vendor, M Food Co., continue to work diligently to resolve the staffing shortages that have resulted in reduced hours of operations and food availability," officials said in a statement. "We hope to return to full capacity in the near future."

U students pay about $2,500 per semester for meal plans.

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