Steel City Pops was added to Union Grounds in August 2015.


Franchises + Steel City from TCU Student Media on Vimeo.

Despite the presence of franchises on campus, the TCU administration is hesitant about adding too many franchises because of the added expense.

Steel City Pops was added to campus this summer and is one of the few franchises on campus along with Chick-fil-A.

Students said they enjoy the addition of another franchise.

“I love that I can spend campus cash on popsicles instead of some hard cash at the place over on West 7th,” dining committee chair Ben Taylor said.

Sophomore strategic communication major Justin Rubenstein said he thinks Steel City Pops brings more variety to food options on campus.

Although Steel City Pops is popular on campus, Director of Housing and Residence Life Craig Allen said that franchises aren’t their main focus when it comes to dining options for students.

“There are costs, there are contractual obligations – things that can limit us and while the brand might seem like the appealing way to go, we have to kind of weigh those factors when making those decisions,” said Allen.

Allen said that one of the main reasons TCU doesn’t have many franchises is because of how often student tastes change.

“What we also know about student tastes is that they change,” said Allen. “So when students’ tastes change overtime, changing out Magnolia’s for something else is a lot easier.”

“But when you’re changing branded concepts, it’s a little bit more time consuming.”

In the past, TCU has had branded concepts like Taco Bell and Pizza Hut.

Students said they enjoy having franchises on campus because it’s a trusted name brand that students can recognize, according to senior political science and journalism major Justine Grace.

“Whenever you go to Chick-fil-A you know exactly what you’re going to get,” Grace said. “Or like a Chipotle. You know exactly what that’s going to taste like.”

“Sometimes it can be like a trial and error with the Sodexo brands that they have,” Grace said.

Allen said that TCU will still consider franchises when adding or changing a dining concept, but those types of restaurants aren’t a priority because of the added cost and time they take to implement.

Taylor said the Student Government Association encourages students to lend their input about dining services through their email. Students can also attend dining committee meetings at 3 p.m. Fridays in the Brown-Lupton University Union private dining rooms.

+ posts

Jessica Ranck is a junior journalism major from San Diego, California. She currently serves as the Greeks/SGA/SDS editor for TCU 360.