Improve on-campus quality of life with more tea options

Sam Thielman

As you look outside at the cold, gray day, it makes you appreciate what you have now: a nice fire, a good book and a hot cup of tea. Then you wake up and realize that it’s your life that’s on fire, the book in front of you is a very bad book about the American Southwest, and you don’t have a cup of tea because the options for hot tea available on campus are very limited.

A lot of people enjoy hot tea. It warms you up and calms you down — necessities in many students’ lives as the days grow colder. It’s also a caffeinated godsend for anyone who isn’t a fan of coffee. Unfortunately, students living on campus are hindered by the limited options, which is why University Housing and Dining should offer a wider selection of hot tea in on-campus markets.

“To be able to just get a tea bag and hot water while walking to class would be a lot more convenient than having to go to an on-campus coffee shop and buy a cup of tea,” government sophomore Jillian Smith said. 

It should be noted that UHD already offers a multitude of different brands of pre-bottled cold tea. While these are nice to enjoy in August, as the weather gets colder students would prefer a warm drink. Additionally, these options are typically very sweet. While this isn’t bad in of itself, very few of the current options appeal to someone who is looking for a more mild option or something they can flavor themselves. 

University Housing and Dining does currently offer some types of hot tea, but the variety is very limited. When I visited Kinsolving Market and Jester City Market, I couldn’t find any caffeine-free or highly caffeinated hot tea varieties. Considering how often students either want to go to bed immediately or stay up all night, these would both be useful to have.

For many of these options, students are forced to go off campus, which can be very difficult for some. Additionally, having the ability to use Dine In Dollars would make these choices more accessible to students who don’t want to spend any more money than they have to.

This idea isn’t difficult to implement, either. 

“It’s fairly easy,” said Rene Rodriguez, director of dining for UHD. “We’re always open to the feedback here, because who are we serving? We’re serving
the students.”

Rodriguez added that this is something University Housing and Dining would absolutely consider implementing. This is a simple change that UHD can make to improve the quality of life of many students on campus. 

“For a lot of students living on campus, quickly being able to buy a box of tea if they’re studying and don’t have the means and the time to go off campus to a market or store where they could find the same options   — this would be really nice,” Smith said. 

The University can’t change the weather, buy you a fireplace or make textbooks any more enjoyable, but they can make all those things just a little bit more bearable by letting students face college life with a cup of hot tea in hand.

Thielman is a rhetoric and writing sophomore from Fort Worth.