University of Memphis is no longer offering students refunds for the mandatory meal plan

WATCH: University of Memphis is no longer offering students refunds for the mandatory meal plan

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Changes are coming to the University of Memphis' dining program, and students aren't happy. They're worried their money is going to waste.

In the past, unused dining dollars were returned to students at the end of the semester in the form of cash. But that program has been replaced with the Tiger Eat$ program and that means the end of those cash refunds.

"I'm not happy with it," Niyah Chambers told FOX13. She wasn't the only student we spoke to upset about the changes to the University's dining program.

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"I think the changes are not the most ideal way to use the money," echoed fellow freshman, Lauren Wilson.

According to a University of Memphis website, each semester students have to put $300 on their Tiger Funds cards to be spent in the dining halls.

Students told FOX13 in the past any unused money was returned to them at the end of the semester, but with the recent changes to the dining dollars program came to the end of those cash refunds.

"It makes sense to have a little extra change in your pocket," Wilson said of the benefit of the refund.

According to that University of Memphis website, this is how the changes will affect students:

Any money leftover from the fall semester will roll over to the spring semester.

When it comes to next semester, it said "you have until the last day of the spring semester to use any Tiger Eat$ funds."

That means, come spring, the money won't be rolled over or refunded.

"I don't think it's the right way to use it. Every cent that we spend in college is useful. I don't think it should just be disappeared, like, we don't know where," Chambers said, frustrated.

"You could use it for more food options outside of campus, outside campus, like Starbucks. Because people use a lot of money for that. It could go towards Tiger Bookstore and paying for books, and anything else you might need," Wilson said finally.

In a statement, the University of Memphis said in part:

Our goal is not to get a financial benefit from any remaining unused Tiger Eats funds, but to continue to invest in more and innovative dining options for our students. This will allow UofM students to fully utilize the relatively nominal amount they pay per semester when compared to the required meal plans noted above at other similar in-state institutions.

They told FOX13 there are an appeal process whereby students in unique circumstances can request an exception. Dining appeals may be submitted at this link.