Ok, while I was trying to go to bed, I came up with another quick idea that someone might be interested in in regards to the food costs.
Contact your friends at Middlebury, Amherst, Williams, Swarthmore, Bowdoin, etc and ask them how their meal plan works. Create a cute and pretty guide comparing the food plans in comparison to Wesleyan’s. Distribute the guide to tours. (The parent’s listserv is actually pretty upset about the high cost of food, too.) I can say, for example, that Bowdoin’s food plan is the holy grail of food plans and Middlebury’s isn’t too shabby, either. If these are who we are competing for for students, prospective students and parents should be aware of what they’re signing onto. (Actually, you can thank Delmar Crimm for this idea since he is so keen on comparing the wages our workers get in comparison to what they would get at other schools; I figured well, if you do that, we might as well compare the meal plans, too, and see how that stacks up.)
Again, just a thought. Not a directive. But it might lend some credibility to that particular demand.