OPINION: The Rhatigan Student Center should accept gift cards


Lindsay Smith / The Sunflower

Freddy’s is located in the Rhatigan Student Center

My mornings begin with a grande iced matcha latte with sweet cream cold foam from Starbucks. Feeding my  caffeine addiction brings me joy every morning and drains my bank account. I have dining dollars like a lot of other freshmen, but I try not to use those all at once because I’ll need them all semester. 

This past winter break, my family gave me gift cards to make sure I am eating enough and saving my money. I have about $75 for Starbucks, $25 for Freddy’s and $15 for Chick fil A. When I went to the Rhatigan Student Center at the beginning of the semester, I put on makeup and got dressed in my outfit for the day and went to get my daily caffeine. 

In efforts to save some of my money, I planned to pay with my gift cards from Christmas. After I ordered my usual, I pulled out one of my gift cards and was ready to pay. The young woman taking my order informed me that the RSC does not accept gift cards. I was surprised and frustrated.

I posted a poll on my personal Instagram and asked students a few questions.  I asked how many people received gift cards to use at the RSC.  Out of 114 responses, 43 percent responded yes. A majority of the participants received gift cards to Chick fil A and Starbucks.

Sophomore Annah Turner is in her final year of school for elementary education with a minor in sign language. Turner tried to use a Starbucks gift card in the RSC to pay for her order and was turned down.

“I don’t understand why they let us use dining dollars and our debit cards but not giftcards,” Turner said. “I ended up using it at a completely different location because I figured I’d get rejected again if I tried in the RSC.”

The never ending loop of spending and investing money into the university bills and trying to afford to eat is draining the little money college kids are scraping up. 

Between all of the extra expenses and bills college students must balance while keeping up with their studies, gift cards are the best present option for holidays. It allows them to save their money while still getting items they want or need. 

 Although dining dollars do help save money, not every student can afford to have them in their meal plan. 

Allowing the use of gift cards would help students at Wichita State significantly. When using a gift card as a payment, a student is more likely to go and get food rather than starve because they cannot afford to get food at the time.

If the RSC can accept our credit and debit cards, then they can figure out how to make gift cards work as well.