Here's Why NYU Is Getting Rid Of Its Chick-Fil-A

Until Chick-fil-A embarked on what The New Yorker once called an "infiltration" of New York City, there was only one place in the five boroughs where you could get the fast food chain's chicken-based fare. Within the New York University dormitory Weinstein Hall, there is a dining hall, and within that dining hall is a Chick-fil-A (via Untapped Cities). But come spring 2021, there won't be, as blog NYU Local reports that the university plans to stop working with the chicken chain.

NYU works with food vendor Chartwells, who you may remember as the culprit behind the shoddy quarantine meals served to students at the start of the 2020 semester. Chartwells has a licensing agreement with Chick-fil-A, and the university has formally requested that the food vendor not extend this agreement, stating that Chick-fil-A's "long-term space, brand, and capital requirements ... do not work." 

"Upstein," as the Weinstein dining hall's upper section is nicknamed, has consistently offered food from chain restaurants: as of 2015, Jamba Juice and Quiznos sat beside Chick-fil-A (via NYU Local). The university is requesting student feedback on what to do with the soon-to-be-former Chick-fil-A space.

Chick-fil-A's NYU departure was a long time coming

NYU Local reports that a large reason the NYU Chick-fil-A's days are numbered is because of student activism related to the chain's historically anti-LGBTQ stance. Specifically, the blog cites efforts from fall 2020 involving a resolution to "remove Chick-fil-A from NYU property." That resolution has been successfully ferried through student government, eventually making its way to NYU's Campus Services department.

Chick-fil-A protests at NYU are nothing new. In 2012, Gothamist reported on multiple efforts by NYU students to oust the chicken chain, including in-person protests and a petition with 11,000 signatures. At the time, the NYU Student Senators Council voted to keep Chick-fil-A, citing "freedom of expression."

This isn't the first time NYU students have organized to eliminate a food provider they felt wasn't serving the school. In 2019, NYU Local reported that NYU was cutting ties with longtime food vendor Aramark. Per Washington Square News, Aramark had faced a backlash from students for health code violations, racial insensitivity, and connections to private prisons.