As part of a 1.9 percent average cost hike that went into effect in
June, prices have increased at some campus eateries and convenience
Prices increased for 520 of the nearly 2,800 items sold by the
University Corporation on campus. Items affected include bottled water,
salami sandwiches and Burger’#8200;King cheeseburgers, among others. Eighteen
percent of items sold by the UC’#8200;were affected by the price increases.
The price increases vary in magnitude, with an average increase of
1.9 percent, according to Dave Nirenberg, director of commercial
services for the UC.
‘?The price increases were pretty nominal,’ he said.
Most of the increases were small, typically less than 10 cents. Some
prices, however, increased by as much as 25 percent, according to the
UC. The item that rose the most in price was the salami sandwich, which
increased in cost by 26 cents, or 6.5 percent.
Nirenberg said prices at on-campus eateries such as Burger King are
still less than market value, indicating that prices are still cheaper
than at off-campus restaurants.
Prices at Subway and the Pub, including alcohol, in the University
Student Union were not affected by the price increases.
‘?There were no increases at the Pub because after doing market
research, we realized that the prices were already too high, so we
decided to modify the menu,’ Nirenberg said. ‘?It is going to be
restructured to be more moderately priced.’
Some places, such as Subway, did not increase their prices because
the UC considered menu prices as close to market value as possible
before students would be forced to go off campus to purchase cheaper
meals, Nirenberg said.
Nirenberg attributed the need for price increases to rising UC
budgetary needs, such as the increase in fuel surcharges, paper goods
and the recently approved staff pay increase.
‘?The UC doesn’t receive external funding,’ Nirenberg said. ‘?It is
self-supported. We have to raise the price of goods to make up for the
rising costs. Hopefully, people understand that the UC doesn’t receive
any funding or money from student fees.’
Kim Daniels, junior sociology major, said she was not sure why the
prices of her daily snacks went up.
‘?I come here every day right before my class to get a doughnut and a
Pepsi,’ she said. ‘?I was sort of surprised when I came in one day and
the prices had gone up.’
‘?We sell around 2,400 items on campus,’ Nirenberg said. ‘?The prices
are still cheaper than an outside vendor. Almost every item is
In order to guarantee that the prices stay relatively low for
students, a lot of market research has to be done, Nirenberg said. He
said items sold on campus are similar in price to those at other
universities, such as UCLA and UC Santa Barbara, as well as some
Even after prices increased at the on-campus Burger King, the items
were less expensive than if one were to walk to the off-campus
franchise to buy the same meal.
The medium Double Whopper meal at the Bookstore Complex Burger King
is $4.99, compared to an off-campus Burger King, where the meal is
‘?(To save money), we try to be as efficient as possible and manage
(the stores) well,’ Nirenberg said. ‘?But we still can’t compete with
warehouse stores like Costco because we don’t have the same purchasing
As the price of fuel has risen, so have the fuel surcharges that the
truck companies charge the UC for delivering goods to campus.
‘?When gas prices are up, we expect to receive (the higher
surcharges),’ Nirenberg said. ‘?(Otherwise), it eats into our profit.
Even the cost of paper goods went up.’
In addition to having to compensate for fuel surcharges, there was
an approved staff pay increase to keep the personnel motivated,
Nirenberg said, which contributed to the rising prices seen on campus
by many students.
‘?Last year, (the staff) worked a whole year without getting a pay
increase,’ Nirenberg said. ‘?There are close to 400 staff members,
consisting of mostly part-time students, who earned pay increases due