The Signal

Serving the College since 1885

Tuesday June 6th

OPINION: Put the ‘Jersey’ back in the College, Campus Town needs a pizza or bagel place

With the new open spot in Campus Town, it’s the perfect opportunity to put in a pizza or bagel joint. (Photo courtesy of Nita Kinatukara/Staff Photographer)
With the new open spot in Campus Town, it’s the perfect opportunity to put in a pizza or bagel joint. (Photo courtesy of Nita Kinatukara/Staff Photographer)

By Cristina Collins

It’s THE College of New Jersey. While not the largest and most known college in New Jersey, the College is a more accurate representation of who New Jersey is. 94.3% of undergraduate students at the College are residents of the state. This means that 94.3% of the students here, along with the 2.7% from New York, have lived their lives spoiling their palette with the best Jersey meals and foods, the most notable ones being bagels and pizza.

The bagel is built into our New Jersey culture. Every Jersey native has one engaged in the notorious and inconclusive state-wide debate on whether everyone’s favorite bagel sandwich is coined “taylor ham” or “pork roll.” This debate very much helps us determine our state’s geography, as we know if someone lives in North Jersey by their “taylor ham” argument, and understand that those that say “pork roll” are from Central and South Jersey. Despite this ongoing argument, everyone in New Jersey is united by the fact that, no matter what you call it, New Jersey makes them the best. 

However, there is no place in Campus Town where one could say, “can I have a Taylor ham (or pork roll), egg and cheese on a plain bagel with S-P-K?” This question is one that every New Jersey resident can ask without any hesitation. It truly is music to our ears.  

Sure, there is the Library Cafe where one can get a breakfast sandwich. However, pre-made “Starbucks” bagels, sausage, bacon, pork roll and eggs, do not do justice for New Jersey residents or even come close to meeting our standards. Jersey bagels are known for their warm, doughy interior, with their perfectly baked hard exterior. These bland and stale bagels served at the school do not fulfill the cravings of the New Jersey resident students that know what a delicious and quality bagel or breakfast sandwich truly is. 

Along with missing our hometown bagel shops, we are also craving a slice from our local pizza joint. While there are options on campus for pizza in the dining hall and the student center, the College students are lacking authentic, Jersey-quality pizza. While we have two options to get a slice for lunch or dinner, my friends and I often find ourselves ordering a pie from a local pizza restaurant, because it replicates the style and quality we have at home. 

As soon as Arooga's suddenly and sadly closed down, students were immediately advocating for a pizza place to fill up its space. With campus town now down a restaurant, this large space would be the perfect opportunity for the long-requested authentic pizza place to make its way to the College. Not only will it satisfy the cravings of these students, but Campus Town is feeling the loss of a sit-down restaurant with a casual and sports-bar ambiance that students were attracted to. A pizza restaurant will replace the comfortable sit-down restaurant that Campus Town is lacking and provide a pizza menu that New Jersey residents are longing for. 

95% of students have grown up with the privilege of warm and fresh bagels for breakfast, and savory and flavor-filled pizza for dinner. The College should recognize the state we represent and fill our Campus Town with restaurants the students want and that is part of our Jersey culture. With a new space opening, there is no excuse to not act on what our New Jersey natives want. 


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