Survey Reveals Students’ Concern about Meals

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A survey was sent out to Holderness students on September 25th, which had three questions regarding eating habits at Holderness. Out of approximately 275 Holderness students, 152 students responded to the survey. The response rate was about 55.47%, which is comparatively higher than the typical Internet survey that receives between 30~40%.


The first question asked about how many times students order out or go downtown to get food. 125 respondents, or 82.2% of students answered, order out or go downtown at least once a week. Among these students, about 50% buy a meal once/week and the other 50% of students buy a meal more than twice/week.


For the second question, students were asked about their favorite restaurant. The result showed three popular restaurants with pretty even distribution: w Biederman’s Deli (29.6%), Downtown Pizza (25.7%), and Thai Smile (24.3%). The interesting point was that 20.39%, or respondents, submitted other restaurants, such as Cafe Monte Alto, Keith’s Pizza, or Six Burner.


The last question considered the least favorite meal at Holderness. 33.6% of the respondents answered Sunday Dinner as their least favorite meal. 27.6% responded with Tuesday and Thursday Family-Style Dinner,  16.4% couldn’t articulate their least favorite meals, and 11.2% responded with Monday Family-Style Lunch.


The fact that more than half of the students participated in the survey was surprising, and this reflects high student interest in eating habits. Also, a few of students chose ‘other’, which requires an additional response and their answers weren’t favorable to current on-campus offerings. Students showed various food preferences in the second question that asked about their favorite restaurant. These responses add to the credibility of the survey and the suggestion that Weld should focus on Sunday dinner and family-style dinner to better serve the needs to students.


In consideration of the fact that 82.2% of students order or go downtown to eat at least one time per week, the question of current Weld food offerings is raised, and the school may want to hear about what students want to change. Since the students eat every day, talk at the table every day, the change in meals will affect the students very directly and quickly. Food is essential for being healthy. Healthy bodies mean healthy minds. If having healthy minds is a part of education, then Holderness may want to provide healthy food to students to support a strong education. Food is our lives and education. And Holderness should be a leader of that.


Maybe now it is the right time to prove that Holderness is an exception to the old tale that boarding schools provide the best meal only during parents’ weekend.