Roanoke College's Maroon cards welcomed at Salem merchants
No cash needed for students patronizing business partners
SALEM, Va. - A small but growing list of Salem businesses have signed up for the College's Maroon Card off-campus program. Students can fill their tank at Sheetz, visit Salem Pizza or Mac and Bob's for dinner, pick up a prescription at CVS or stop by Yummy's for a late-night snack-all without a cent in their pockets. So long as money has been pre-loaded to the Maroon Card, all of these businesses will be happy to accept it in lieu of cash or credit cards.
Alcohol, tobacco and firearms purchases are off-limits to card users, but almost any other items are allowed. Senior Warner Whatley supports the new program, saying, "I think it's a good thing because it allows parents to regulate where their students are spending money off-campus."
The cashless shopping initiative is made possible by the software capabilities of the Blackboard program students have been using academically for several years. Promoters of BbOne, as the software is called, said that "students are coming to expect the safety and convenience that comes with a cash-free campus even when they move off school grounds."
Emily Messenger, the College's business affairs comptroller, said, "We knew the Blackboard software program had the capability [to accommodate off-campus shopping], so that was one of the reasons we chose it." Campus officials have been working hard to get the program up and running, and it debuted during this year's May term classes. CVS, Salem Pizza, Sheetz, Mac and Bob's and Yummy's already are accepting the cards, and Frank's Pizza among others soon will be. More than $35,000 has been spent at these local merchants through the Maroon Card program so far this year.
Students may not use meal swipes at off-campus locations and must make sure that money loaded onto their cards is deposited into the Maroon Money fund, not the bookstore or dining funds. Although deposits to the account can be made in person at the business office, parents and students also can load money online, making this program a cashless convenience from start to finish.
Roanoke College, an independent, co-educational, four-year liberal arts college in Salem, Virginia, combines firsthand learning with valuable personal connections in a classic, undergraduate setting. Roanoke prepares students for their futures through its commitment to providing a true classic college experience. Roanoke is one of just 276 colleges nationwide with a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation's oldest and most prestigious honor society. The Princeton Review names Roanoke as one of the "best in the Southeast."
For additional information, call the Roanoke College Public Relations Office at (540) 375-2282.
Released: October 20, 2008
Contact Name: Public Relations
Contact Phone: (540) 375-2282
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