—Decker Flamm, Staff Writer—
College is full of new experiences such as the classes, the sporting events, and the freedom. However, possibly one of the most important component of college life is the food on college campuses. Students forget all about the home-cooked meals from their previous life and focus their eating habits more on the food chains and restaurants near them on their own campus. While definitely not the most healthy of options and a definite contributor to the “Freshman 15,” these food chains located on college campuses are one of the draws to going to certain schools for some people.
From the other point of view (Colleges/Universities and food chains), colleges get to draw students to their campuses and increase some revenue through sales. Meanwhile, the food chains get the advantage of expanding their companies through colleges and universities and sell their food to college students all over America.
Certain food chains take more advantage of the simple and easy target market of the large number of people attending college throughout the United States than others. Here are some food chains that you will most likely see located somewhere on just about any college campus in America:
Starbucks has taken a progressive approach to spreading their business in colleges throughout America. It seems as just about every college campus or at least the largest colleges with a lot of smaller colleges as well have a Starbucks located somewhere on campus. As of 2014, Starbucks had around 300 stores on college campuses in the U.S. I can only imagine that in the last 4 years, that number has increased by a fairly large amount. Located typically in either the library, student union, or bookstore, Starbucks helps students keep their energy up for studying and schoolwork with coffee and other caffeinated drinks. It seems that this is a perfect marketing strategy for a coffee company, appealing to the people in America who probably need to keep their energy up the most, especially during finals week.
In recent years, Chick-Fil-A has made an extensive effort to expand their stores to not only large universities, but small colleges in America. Because of this, an even larger percentage of college students have the ability to purchase their favorite meals from a top of the line fast food chain with impeccable service. With the emergence of food chains at smaller universities and colleges throughout America, we start to see the growth and expansion of fast food past what we thought was the ceiling. It is a new life for fast food and the large food chains that run this country’s food industry. And for the college students, it provides quick and cheap access to our favorite foods that we wouldn’t be able to access any other way so easily. Chick-Fil-A is an American favorite that has incredible food and even better service. So it is no surprise that a majority of colleges would want a fine food chain such as Chick-Fil-A to have a store on their campus.
In conclusion, Starbucks and Chick-Fil-A seem to be the front runners of food chains to expand into the college scene. There are many different varieties of food chains throughout all the colleges, and they continue to grow. More and more places continue to attempt to expand their brands and improving upon their revenue. It seems to be a relationship that benefits everyone. The students get more food options (though most are unhealthy). The school gets more revenue spread across their campus. And the food chain gets to expand upon their business model and break into new places. So enjoy the delicious food at college venues during your collegiate career.