GV approaches first full year of cashless operations


GVL / Meghan Tripp (Landgren)

Chloe Schram, Staff Writer

Grand Valley State University’s Cashless Campus Initiative will soon mark its first full year of operation. As students return to campus this fall, they will continue using this new cashless system on campus.  

In early 2020 GVSU began implementing this new system, allowing only credit cards and electronic forms of payment to be used on campus. The system was integrated into campus infrastructure throughout 2021.

As emphasized by university officials, the cashless system serves to improve various facets of campus transactions including speeding up the process of making a transaction, reducing contact between the employee and customer and improving the safety and security of transactions. 

Students around campus have already found success as the cashless system has integrated into campus operations. 

Sophomore Audrey Brinckerhoff said she has seen positive results of the Cashless Campus Initiative.

“I feel like the new system has made lines go faster and made employees’ jobs much easier,” Brinckerhoff said.

Brinckerhoff said she prefers using electronic methods of payment and finds herself doing so off campus as well. 

The cashless system is not an unprecedented one.

GVSU has joined multiple universities across the country in converting to a “cashless campus.” Schools including Vanderbilt, North Carolina State, University of Tennessee-Knoxville and others have also created similar systems in order to improve purchases around campus.

The cashless system leads to quicker moving lines when buying food and easier methods of payment when making purchases.

Additionally, with COVID-19 still affecting students and employees on campus the cashless method will reduce contact between customer and employee, further reducing the spread of any harmful contaminants.

With changes in transactions at GVSU it is important to understand what methods of payment can be used. 

Credit cards have remained a common way to make purchases but are only one of multiple ways to pay without cash. Students and employees at GVSU can also use Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay and Tap-and-Go as forms of payment on campus in order to improve the speed and security of purchases.

For students equipped solely with cash, the university has implemented multiple cash to card ATM kiosks around campus. Students may receive a prepaid card from these kiosks to access a university-sanctioned form of payment. The prepaid cards can hold up to $500 each and will not illicit additional fees. Students can find the cash to card ATM kiosks in the Kirkhof Center, the Laker MarketPlace and the DeVos Center.

Another form of payment that can be accepted if needed is checks. Checks cannot be used at food service but can be utilized for other transactions on campus. 

Cashless campuses like GVSU have also aimed to decrease errors that can be made by employees by allowing for uniform, electronic tabulation and accounting of funds.

For a complete list of frequently asked questions compiled by the university, visit the Cashless Campus page of GVSU’s Business and Finance website.