Students wishing to apply for an exemption should please read the appropriate information below prior to submitting a request.
Once a request is written, please submit it to Residential Life at Residential-Life@macalester.edu, and you will be contacted regarding next steps.
A full meal plan is obligatory for each student who lives in college housing unless the space is designated otherwise. Only exemption requests for medically prescribed diets that cannot be accommodated in Café Mac will be considered. Academic class or employment schedules, finances or vegetarian/vegan/organic diets are not viable reasons for exemption to the meal plan. Food service personnel are amenable to discussing special provisions or substitutions to meet dietary requirements, scheduling conflicts or other individual needs. Therefore, before pursuing an exemption, it is expected that you will have identified why this is an issue, and discussed the possibility of special provisions with Café Mac personnel, before contacting Residential Life.
Are your dietary needs related to a medical issue or disability related accommodation? If you are requesting release from the residence hall meal plan requirement, you should be aware that dietary restrictions do not always constitute a valid reason for cancelling your meal plan contract. Bon Appetite, Macalester College’s meal provider, is committed to offering food options that meet the needs of students on special /restricted diets. Appropriate documentation would need to be submitted to Disability Services, that verifies the conditions or circumstances that prevent the student from eating on the meal plan. Guidelines can be found on the Disability Services website. In general, documentation must be current and written by someone who has the credentials, expertise, and experience with the specific disability and qualifications to make a recommendation. Once all documentation has been received, requests will be evaluated by Disability Services they will notify the student on the status of their request.
Is your request non-disability and non-medical related? If you wish to petition to be released from the meal plan requirement for reasons other than medical or disability accommodation, you must submit a typewritten request via email to Residential-Life@macalester.edu. Please include the following in your written request: your name, your current housing assignment, phone, and email address. Include the following three components in your petition. Only a complete petition will be reviewed.
- Your specific needs that cannot nor have not been met through the campus meal plan and/or how the meal plan poses a hardship for you. Keep in mind that eating on campus presents financial obstacles for everyone (and their families) who attends Macalester College. It is your responsibility to prove the uniqueness of your situation and the difference between your current circumstances and those of the past that enabled you to participate in the meal plan on campus.
- How you have tried to meet your needs and/or resolve your hardship with the Café Mac staff?
- Your alternative plans for adequate nutrition and meals and how these plans will meet your needs and/or alleviate hardship.
Residential Life staff will review the petition to determine if your meal plan requirement with the college will be waived due to exceptional need, hardship, or extenuating circumstances. If your request is approved, Card Services will end your meal plan access and your student account will be charged the per day rate for each day you were on the meal plan during the semester you requested to cancel your meal plan plus an additional week. You will be notified in writing of the outcome.
Campus living is an integral part of the total educational experience at Macalester. Residential living provides students with a safe, convenient place to live and learn with a nutritious, reasonably priced meal program. By living on campus, students develop interpersonal skills and intercultural understanding in an atmosphere of mutual support for academic, cultural, and intellectual pursuits. Because of the educational importance of the residence life experience, Macalester College requires all first and second-year students to live on campus. A previous boarding school experience, such as the United World College, will not be considered an exception to the two-year (four consecutive semesters) residency requirement.
Guidelines and Procedures for Petition
Please email Residential Life at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to petition for a Housing Contract Exemption. Once we receive your outreach, we will be sure to communicate with you regarding your request.