The Ferris Board of Trustees decided during the 2017-18 school year that Ferris would begin a partnership with Pepsi after having Coca-Cola products on campus for 20 years.
Along with dispensing beverages on campus, Pepsi will provide the opportunity to get a food truck in the near future, give athletics access to Gatorade, expand athletics concessions, offer access to their Hello Goodness healthy vending program and establish the Pepsi Perseverance Endowed Scholarship, according to Associate Vice President Gheretta Harris.
“I believe that anytime we can offer additional options to our students, that provides for a better chance of meeting the needs of all students,” Harris said. “It is our goal to better understand those needs and to adjust accordingly.”
Pepsi has pledged $50,000 to go to an endowed scholarship for students who live on campus and use dining services as a part of the Ferris Futures Scholarship Program and $7,500 annually to support the Ferris Foundation for the life of the contract, according to the Ferris website. Athletics will be provided with coolers, towels, squeeze bottles, cups and Gatorade products. Pepsi will also help expand athletics concessions to an athletic field where concessions aren’t currently available, according to Harris.
“We have new Gatorade bottles we use during games and a Gatorade fridge that we are going to use to keep chocolate milk at our field so we can have them after practice as we run off to class,” Ferris pharmacy senior and women’s soccer defender Carley Dubbert said. “It’s very important to stay hydrated because your coaches expect you to be performing at your best ability each day.”
The Hello Goodness vending program consists of healthier beverage and snack options that are low-calorie, low-fat, kosher, gluten-free and low-sodium, according to Harris. The first installments of the vending machines will be in the Student Recreation Center and the Hagerman Pharmacy Building. For students who would rather drink Coke, The Market and Snack Shack will carry Coke and Diet Coke for the first year of the agreement to assist with the transition.