Over the summer, the College introduced the new Eph Points system, changing the methods in which students pay for services with their ID cards. The new Eph Points system allows students to pay for laundry and food from the dining halls from one account, whereas the two services formerly charged two distinct financial accounts. Students can buy Eph Points by logging onto PeopleSoft and charging Eph Points to their term bill.
“The system that was formerly used for laundry was called cash-to-card, and it was obsolete,” Bob Volpi, director of Dining Services, said. “For two years, we struggled when the system needed repairs because we had trouble finding the parts. We had no choice but to change the system because it was inefficient. We hope that students recognize the convenience of being able to add Eph Points online.” The cash-to-card machines that were once in Paresky and Mission Park have been removed; however, students can still purchase Eph Points with cash by going to Droppers.
The new system was implemented in part to make laundry more convenient for students. Students can now go online to check the availability of the washers and dryers in every laundry facility, while this option existed in only a few dormitories last year.
Dining Services has also anticipated future uses for Eph Points. The future Stetson-Sawyer library will have a café, and students will be able to buy self-service coffee, beverages and snacks there. While vending machines on campus cannot accept Eph Points currently, they will have this capability in the future.
Another advantage to the new Eph Point system is the ability for students to recover their balances in case they lose their IDs. With the former cash-to-card system, there was no way for Campus Safety and Security or Dining Services to determine the value on the IDs, so students lost whatever money they put on their cards if they lost their IDs.
However, students who run out of Eph Points on the weekends may be faced with the inconvenience of needing to wait until Monday morning to pay for laundry or dining hall food using their IDs. Eph Points bought on PeopleSoft require one business day to be processed, and Droppers is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“The ability to add points online is quite convenient,” Tyler Sparks ’15, head of the Dining Services Committee, said. “I feel that students will adjust and find the system much more practical … While it may take time for Ephs to adjust to the new point system, their consolidation, in addition to the convenience of adding them online, will definitely improve life on campus.
Other notable changes along with the Eph Points system are the College’s 280 new washers and dryers and the price increase of doing one load of laundry from $1.25 to $1.50. “There has been no price increase in over 10 years,” Volpi said. “We thought that it was an opportunity to put in better machines that use less detergent, are more energy efficient and include the LaundryView technology.”