Toronto’s Ryerson University is implementing new options for leftover student meal plan funds this April following demand from students to reform the current use-it-or-lose-it formula.
According tot a report by The Eyeopener, Ryerson’s meal plan reform will mark a change from the current method that sees students lose any funds not spent by the end of each academic year. As of April 1, Ryerson will provide students with four options for remaining meal plan funds, including carryovers and refunds.
The first option for students is now a default carry over of leftover funds. Students can simply do nothing, as at the end of the year any leftover funds will now automatically be added to the following year’s meal plan.
The second option enables students to request a transfer of the leftover funds to be placed into their RAMSS accounts — the university’s online web portal used for class enrollment, fee payment, financial aid and other student-facing services. Ryerson will cap RAMSS transfers at a maximum of 20% of the of the original meal plan amount. Once transferred, the leftover funds could then go toward other payments a student may owe, including tuition or residence. Anything over the allotted 20% will automatically carry over to the following year’s meal plan.
The third option is to transfer the leftover meal funds to students’ Campus Fund — which covers photocopying, laser printing, campus store purchases, vending machines and at retail dining locations — with the same 20% cap in place.
The fourth option allows students to choose to make a donation of the remaining amount to go toward emergency foods for students.
Most neighboring Ontario universities employ the carry-over option for leftover funds, and Ryerson’s new meal fund options and cap system bring the campus in line with its peers. Students have between April 1 and May 15 to decide what to do with their remaining funds after which funds will default to the carry over option to the following year’s meal plan.