|Student Members of College Union Board Make Chick-fil-A Decision
September 18, 2012
The board of students responsible for activities programming at the Davidson College Union has decided not to serve Chick-fil-A food at its events this year. In the past, Chick-fil-A was one of several vendors whose fare was served in connection with the Union Board's "After Midnight," which is held monthly and typically features free food and some form of entertainment. Chick-fil-A was the food served once or twice a year.
The college administration was not involved in this decision, and the Union Board's decision is in no way an official position of the college. There is no formal relationship between Davidson College and Chick-fil-A, and the restaurant has no facility on campus. Other student groups, as well as individual students, faculty and staff are free to serve Chick-fil-A at their events and to patronize the restaurant.
The issue arose on campus when a student launched an on-line petition in early August that attracted more than 650 adherents asking the Union Board to stop supplying Chick-fil-A at After Midnight "...until Chick-fil-A pledges to no longer fund groups which work to stop the legalization of gay marriage."
A campus-wide forum on the issue was hosted by the The Davidsonian school newspaper, and the Union Board also surveyed students about which food vendors they would prefer at After Midnight this year.
Adriana Nassar, Union Board president, and Cameron Joe, Union Board vice president, issued a statement on behalf of the board following the decision. It said, "Based on feedback gathered, the Union Board believes the interests of Davidson students are best served by not patronizing Chick-fil-A for this school year."
Board members specified that the decision only covers the current school year, since membership on the board changes every year.
The Union Board is one of 150 student organizations on campus. Its executive board is comprised of 18 committee chairs and officers, and is responsible for a variety of programming on campus, including concerts, speakers, films, novelty events and the Artist Series of major performances. Members of the student body elect the president and vice president of the board, and the other officers and committee chairs file applications to serve in their positions. Membership on individual committees is open to the entire study body.
Davidson is a highly selective independent liberal arts college for 1,900 students located 20 minutes north of Charlotte in Davidson, N.C. Since its establishment in 1837 by Presbyterians, the college has graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars and is consistently regarded as one of the top liberal arts colleges in the country. Through The Davidson Trust, the college became the first liberal arts institution in the nation to replace loans with grants in all financial aid packages, giving all students the opportunity to graduate debt-free. Davidson competes in NCAA athletics at the Division I level, and a longstanding Honor Code is central to student life at the college.